The Flower Guarding Bell - Chapter 11
Chapter Eleven - Many Love, Many Sorrows
Nangong Ping could only feel jubilate coming from his thoughts.
These two lonely solitary, cold and frosty women, the darkness could not shake their hearts, the poisonous snake could not frighten them into moving, even if it was a life and death situation they remained as tranquil as the firm mountain. Even if it was the humiliation and molestation by others, they could endure. But when Nangong Ping was in danger, they forgot everything.
Wan Da looked on with a sigh in his heart. He was secretly pleased for Nangong Ping but the old and wise person that he was, he knew that this happiness would hide many foreshadows.
In between his sighing, Mei Yinxue and Ye Manqing had flashed to the midst of Zhan Donglai. The two of them had really hated this arrogant and insulting young man to the bones.
Therefore four beautiful hands were all hitting on Zhan Donglai most vulnerable positions.
Zhan Donglai by now had recovered his composure and was laughing arrogantly. “The two maidens want to fight with me? Good, good. Let me show you some of the rarely seen famous techniques of mine so that the two of you would be impressed.”
Although he had started off laughing in a loud hilarious manner but it became weaker and weaker. When he had finished the last word, his face was solemn and he could not laugh anymore.
For when he had said the second or third words, he had suddenly discovered that the strokes used by these two alluring and very beautiful women were extremely sharp and vicious.
He could only see them dancing with their dresses and robes fluttering. Even their beautiful fingers were brighter than the starlight and looked like ten lightning fast sharp swords. After more than ten strokes, Zhan Donglai did not dare to be careless. And after another ten strokes flew by, he sweated profusely.
Mei Yinxue attacked with her right hand; her hand gesture was like that of a orchid. She hit against Zhan Donglai Jiang Tai, Xuan Ji, Qi Men, Cang Xue accupoints. Those four accupoints were scattered far apart but she seemed to hit those accupoints at the same time and he could not tell which was the first or last. Zhan Donglai tried to protect his body as he back off five steps and looked at Mei Yinxue who was gently brushing her loosen hair. Mei Yinxue lovingly said, “Little Sister Ye, do you think this person martial skills are not so bad right? No wonder when he talks, his words are so inhumane.”
Ye Manqing was startled as her right hand slanted defensively before she attacked with three more strokes. Failing to comprehend the wordings of Mei Yinxue, her only response was a cold hum.
Mei Yinxue turned her slim body and gently extended her hands to the left of Zhan Donglai offside by one foot. Though it was offside but if Zhan Donglai were to evade Ye Manqing three strokes, Mei Yinxue would have struck him.
He was startled as he hastily extended both his hands in an awkward position as he evaded all the attacks.
Mei Yinxue tenderly touched her hair and lovingly said. “His martial ability aren’t bad at all. Little Sister Ye, you just take a step in the shade. Don’t stay here to be cumbersome, alright?”
Ye Manqing secretly bit her teeth, extended her shoulders and execute seven more strokes.
Mei Yinxue giggled. “What an excellent martial skill, what an excellent stroke…Good sister, it is not that I think your martial skills are not on par. But if you are to deal with his Kunlun Celestial Palace skills, you still need a little bit of work. Why don’t you listen to sister me and back off!”
In between her laughs, she had attacked with just a few simple strokes.
Although simple, all were extremely sharp and vicious. Some of her blows seemed to hit offside but were in fact the only retreating position that Zhan Donglai could move if he evaded from Ye Manqing's attacks. Some of her blows were on the right but ended up on the left.
Zhan Donglai was jolted as he thought. “Who is this maiden? What a vicious stance, what a vicious eyesight that she could actually know my martial origins.” Suddenly he gave a great shout. In his anxiety, he used the Kunlun Flying Dragon swiftness skill that was so renowned throughout the Pugilist.
Mei Yinxue giggled a laugh and said. “Good sister, since you don’t listen to elder sister, sister will only have to leave.” Before she had finished, she had moved back one meter away.
Nangong Ping was startled and solemnly said. “What are you doing?”
Mei Yinxue was all smiles as she lovingly said. “It so embarrassing for two to fight one. Let her try awhile, why are you so worry about?”
Nangong Ping became solemn and did not bother with her anymore as he observed Zhan Donglai movements. His body seemed to be able to change in mid- air and also when he just landed; he could immediately jumped up again as he borrowed Ye Manqing windforce. In that instant, Ye Manqing seemed about to succumbed to Zhan Donglai strange and ingenious blows. But after several blows had gone by, Ye Manqing remained strangely as she was before. Even though she was in a disadvantage position but she was undefeated. Her hands were like the wings of a phoenix, as sudden as the soaring Phoenix. Her legs seemed not to move but in fact it was moving bit by bit in a very intricate unnoticed movement yet she never moved one inch from the same position.
Mei Yinxue was slowly perplexed. She was wondering why Ye Manqing could hold out for so long and still remained undefeated. Then her watery eyes moved and she laughed captivating. “I see that Danfeng Ye Qiubai has taught her a special movement skill to deal with such a martial technique. But I afraid that Ye Qiubai would never have thought that she did not use this technique to deal with the disciples of the Divine Dragon but instead on the Kunlun disciples.”
Nangong Ping coldly hummed but did not look at her.
Wan Da quietly moved to him and said. “I am afraid that Maiden Ye…”
Nangong Ping said. “Even if it mean two versus one, I will still lend her a helping hand.”
Wan Da secretly looked at Mei Yinxue and saw that she looked quiet, lowered her head down and melancholy sighed. “Don’t you worry. I…I…” Suddenly she sprang like a arrow and gave Zhan Donglai a blow.
By now Ye Manqing was already breathless as she breathe softly. As her strength was not as before, so when Zhan Donglai attention was switched to Mei Yinxue, she secretly sighed and moved back one meter. She looked idiocy at Zhan Donglai shadowy figure with great intense.
When Nangong Ping looked at her, he almost wanted to walk to her side but he did not do so.
Wan Da sighed in relief and said in a low voice. “No wonder the Peacock Concubine is known throughout the Fraternity…” Although he did not finish but his meaning was very clear – He was greatly impressed by Mei Yinxue martial art techniques.
Ye Manqing secretly sighed and lowered her head. She glance at the shadows of everyone under this starlight before she sighed again before turning her back and slowly walked away.
Nangong Ping softly called out after her. “Maiden Ye…” He was besides her in an instant. “Are you going?”
Ye Manqing did not lift her head and slowly said. “I…I am going.” Nangong Ping said. “But benevolent teacher…”
Before he could finish, Mei Yinxue suddenly exclaimed. “Hold it!” She was heartbreak when Nangong Ping talked to Ye Manqing with such concern.
Nangong Ping, Ye Manqing turned at the same time and saw Zhan Donglai halted too just as he was about to attack with a stance. Everyone turned around and was startled.
Zhan Donglai asked. “What is the matter?”
Mei Yinxue touched her hair gently and her composed face suddenly broke into a captivating and loving smile. “You and I have no feuds with one another, why are we fighting for our lives?”
Zhan Donglai was puzzled and looked idiocy into her watery eyes and her alluring smile that was looking at him. So he unwittingly patted himself on his chest and laughed. “That true, you and me have no feuds, why are we fighting for our lives?”
He was laughing and talking at the same time but his hands were secretly wiping his sweat from his forehead.
Mei Yinxue captivating laughed. “Not only do we not have to fight for our lives but with our martial skills if we could only exchange pointers, in the Pugilist, who will be our match?”
She kept saying “We,” that Nangong Ping countenance changed greatly after he heard it.
Zhan Donglai broke into an idiocy laugh and he could only nod. “That's so true. If only we could exchange pointers…haha. This is too great. It is simple too great.”
Mei Yinxue smiled. “Then why don’t we exchange pointers?” Zhan Donglai laughed loudly. “That so true, then we…”
Nangong Ping could not resist it anymore and he thundered. “Shut up!” Mei Yinxue sunk her countenance and coldly asked. “What is the matter?”
Zhan Donglai look perplexed and stared and he too shouted. “What is the matter, are you…”
Mei Yinxue interrupted. “Let's ignore him.” She turned and looked coldly at Nangong Ping. “You and I are not related or friends. What I want to do is none of your business. As for Long Bushi last will, it is also none of my business. You have better go with your Maiden Ye to finish his will.”
Nangong Ping stood motionless rooted to the ground, bit his teeth and clenched his fists.
Mei Yinxue turned to look at Zhan Donglai with a captivating smile. “Let us go and find a place to eat. I am really hungry.”
Zhan Donglai was delighted and it was shown on his face. “Let go!” The two of them looked at one another in the eyes and were all smiles.
Zhan Donglai turned his head back and said loudly. “If you want to challenge me to a duel, you should go back and train for another three years. By then, I will still let you with one hand.” When he had finished, Mei Yinxue and him had disappeared into the darkness, leaving behind his cruel laughter.
Nangong Ping stood motionless rooted to the ground. The laughter pierced through his ears and he shivered in his most innermost heart. He clenched his fists and secretly exclaiming. “Mei Yinxue, Mei Leixue, Mei Yinxue, Mei Leixue…” In his head, he was just repeating those two words.
After Mei Yinxue was far away, Ye Manqing suddenly hummed. “Why did you not go after her?”
Nangong Ping sighed but from his mouth he coldly laughed. “Why must I go after her?”
Ye Manqing coldly said. “What a heartless person!” She flicked her dress and turned her face around.
Nangong Ping was startled and looked at her idiocy. He questioned himself. “I am heartless? The way she treats me, the one that is heartless, is me…?”
Suddenly Ye Manqing turned her head and said. “She is so nice to you, do you not know or do you never even place it in your heart?”
Nangong Ping was startled and slowly asked. “The way she is, she is nice to
Ye Manqing coldly hummed and said. “If she is not nice to you, why will
she be so concern about your safety? She was not moved by anything just now but when she saw…haiz, haiz…” She ceased her words for she remembered that she was the same. After sighing more two times, she lowered her head and there were two tinge of red on her alluring face.
Nangong Ping could not resist sighing. His heart was really very confused and numbed. Because of Mei Yinxue past reputation, her strange behavior and her strange ways with the other people, caused him unable to believe that she would love him. It was because of this same reason, that caused him to unable to forgive her for what seemed to be forgivable things.
This was a very complex feeling and also the weakness of the human race.
He could not explain it to others and he could not explain to himself.
Because she did not take care of Di Yang, because she purposely let Ye Manqing be humiliated. Although she had once purposely treated himself with coldness but the upright and righteous Nangong Ping after he had fallen in love, he unwitting became selfish too. He could only thought. “I did not treat her like this but why did she treat me like that?” Therefore he sighed and asked. “Why did she treat me in this manner? Why did she treat me in this manner?”
Ye Manqing lifted her head and said. “Do you know how much she likes you. When she saw other girl looking for you, she…she…” She purposely acted very sternly and said. “She does not know that I am looking for you because I ever promised your Mentor Master to do something for him.” Nangong Ping was now in a wave of confusion. Was it sorrow, or anger or delight? Suddenly he found out that everything that Mei Yinxue did deserve to be forgiven. It just that he was thinking of too many things (jealousy) and wronged her. Now he blamed himself greatly in his heart. But suddenly he thought that not all things she did deserve to be forgiven when he remembered how she smiled so lovingly at Zhan Donglai. Therefore he started to feel a throttling heartache in his innermost place…
Alas! A young man with too much feeling would surely find it to be such heartache.
The old Wan Dan looked at these young man and women who were troubled by matters of the heart, he immediately thought of when he was young and he was exactly the same. Therefore he sighed and felt pity.
Therefore he was not surprised by Nangong Ping reaction that looked suddenly delightful and suddenly sorrowful. He only felt pitiful for Ye Manqing who was looking melancholy and sorrowful and who spoke out for Mei Yinxue because she was sympathizing for her and had understand her feeling. It was because he had already observed that although this young woman looked cold and frosty but she was in fact, surrounded by many emotions.
Therefore he could not resist sighing. “Although Maiden Mei is gone but it is because she did it in a fit of anger. I only pity that arrogant and egoistic young man, he will surely…”
Nangong Ping cold hummed and interrupted. “No matter how arrogant and egoistic Zhan Donglai is, she shouldn’t use that usual method to deal with him.”
Wan Da said. “Although it is correct but…” He sighed. Nangong Ping suddenly said aloud. “The Fallen Autumn Leaf!”
Wan Dan was startled and asked. “Fallen Autumn Leaf, is it the…”
Nangong Ping exclaimed. “That is the sword that is left behind by benevolent teacher to me. I left it besides Di Yang.” As there were too many things that had happened, he remembered the sword only now.
Wan Da was startled and he said. “When Di Yang ran off, his hand seemed to shine…”
Nangong Ping turned around and said. “Let's go. I want…”
Ye Manqing glanced at him and coldly asked. “Where are you going?” Nangong Ping replied. “I…”
Ye Manqing did not wait for him to reply and interrupted. “No matter where you are going. It not too late to read your benevolent teacher last will first and then go.”
Nangong Ping sighed. “Is benevolent teacher last will with maiden?” Ye Manqing took out a letter slowly from her clothing. Her watery eyes rolled and she gently put it on the ground.
Nangong Ping picked it up and asked solemnly. “But according to benevolent teacher’s order, there is still three more days before end of March.”
Ye Manqing coldly said. “At this moment, you are surely not going back to Zhijiao Manor anymore. So what does it matter if you read it first? If your benevolent teacher unfinished wishes require you and me to accomplish it, it is best we finish it fast. If it isn’t for your Mentor Master’s request, I would have washed my hands off this matter already.” In between her words, her intentions were clear. She did not want to have anything to do with Nangong Ping. But in her eyes, it was full of melancholy.
Nangong Ping stood rigid for awhile and slowly tore opened the letter. The ever so familiar words floated in his eyes. “Ping Er as you know, Zhijiao Manor is not a place where you should spend all your life. Your father businesses need you to help him to take care of it. Both your parents are kind to all and they disdain wealth…”
His eyes stopped reading for awhile. He secretly felt grateful for his Mentor Master’s respect for his parents. He was feeling greatly appreciated. He continued to read. “You have an extraordinary background, have a good memory. Your future will be bright but a great man cannot do without a wife. Her help will be very much needed. Maiden Ye Manqing is young, beautiful, intelligence and understanding. She is good enough to be your pillar of strength. That is my first wish.
If Long Fei had no son, I hope that you will name your second son after my surname so that the Long line would not be extinct. That is my second wish.”
Suddenly Nangong Ping felt a rush of warm on his face and did not dare to look at Ye Manqing. He really did not expect that his Mentor Master unfinished wishes will be ‘That matter’. Therefore he sighed and continued to read. Thirdly, in the mythical origin of the Pugilist, there is a mysterious legend. All the martial techniques in the Fraternity do not come from the sacred ground of Shaolin Mt. Songshan, or Kunlun, Wudang but from a temple and an island. The island name is called ‘Devil Flock’ and the temple is called ‘Divine Creator’. These two places are hidden in the most desolate of places and are extremely difficult to find. The Devil Flock Island is said to host the most cunning and most evil people while the Temple of the Divine Creator is the place for those with great loyalty and great benevolent. But unless you have supreme martial abilities, it is impossible to step into these two places.”
Nangong Ping was bewildered and thought that it was too mysterious and strange. He continued to read. “When I am young I have heard of the legend of this one island and one temple. But the one who told me warned me severely that in my entire life, I can only pass this secret only once or else even if I could travel to all the places in search, I would never be able to find it. Therefore I specifically passed this secret to you and Ye Manqing. Please remember that you must not pass this secret lightly. Please remember. If fates forbid, I hope the two of you can find the two places so as to fulfill my wish.”
When Nangong Ping had finished, he unwittingly closed his eyes and from his mind were two images…
One of them was a place of white golden palace temple that was built of white jade. Inside the temple, were many old men that discussed the various theories on martial techniques and displaying its unfathomable prowess. Outside the palace temple were heavenly creatures, young boys and girls that were playing around.
On the other hand, in a darken place where the waves rose terribly, in a valley on an island, were the dark creepy forest. The malevolent air and the smell of blood could be detected ten miles away. Those ships from the open seas from time to time would be taken away by the devils on the island…
Ye Manqing looked on suspiciously. She only saw him holding the piece of paper and suddenly flushed. Then suddenly he was startled, then there seemed to be a laughter in his eyes, then perplexed. Therefore she became curious and could not resist asking. “Have you finished reading yet?”
Nangong Ping was startled as he woke up from his dream like thoughts and said. “I'll finished.” And he hid the paper behind his back.
Ye Manqing coldly laughed awhile and said. “Since you are not willing to let me read your benevolent teacher last will, it doesn’t matter to me.”
Nangong Ping stumbled. “It…it…not that I am not willing…”
Ye Manqing was as composed as water and coldly interrupted. “I only want to ask you. The three unfinished wishes of your benevolent teacher, is it related to me?”
Nangong Ping softly sighed and stumbled. “This…yes…this…” He sighed in his heart and said. “Not only is it related to you but alas…”
Ye Manqing looked perplexed as she said, “If it have nothing to do with me, I am going.” She brushed her longhair aside and walk away in strides.
Nangong Ping said, “Maiden Ye…”
Ye Manqing coldly replied. “What is the matter?”
Nangong Ping said, “Yes…this….” His heart was anxious and embarrassed.
He really did not know what to do and was secretly sighing. “Although Mentor Master has his orders but…This is really impossible to be realized, alas! Farewell. After we parted today, we may not meet again. I hope that you…” Before he could finish, the paper in his hand was snatched by Ye Manqing.
As Ye Manqing walked away in strides, she suddenly turned around when she walked past him and snatched the paper away from him. She coldly said. “Your benevolent teacher orders you and me to read it together and you disobey him. But I can’t bear to disobey the orders that your benevolent teacher has given me.” As she said, her eyes moved. But after reading for awhile, she was suddenly very red and the cold and frosty countenance totally vanished. After reading for another while, she suddenly ‘moan’ and used her beautiful hands to cover her face and said. “You…you…”
Nangong Ping stood rigidly onto the ground feeling embarrass as he stumbled. “I…I…” Although he felt embarrassing and troubled but there was a warm sweet feeling. He could not resist taking a look at her. Only to see her watery eyes coincidentally looking at him at the same time and their glances locked. Ye Manqing moaned again. All of a sudden she started to walk away.
Although she was walking in strides yet she did not exhibited her swiftness skill. It was like she wanted to wait for someone to hold her back.
Nangong Ping looked at her back view but he did not move at all. Suddenly there was a loud strange shout!
Ye Manqing stopped in her tracks and heard a tearing shrieking sound in the distant.
Nangong Ping expression changed and he could feel the piercing sound of that scream deeply in his heart.
Ye Manqing shivered and her slim body jumped back and was besides Nangong Ping. “What…is…this?” The terrifying cry that was heard caused this cold and haughty maiden to stumble in her speech.
Nangong Ping looked at Wan Da and asked. “What is going on here?”
In the darkness, he saw Wan Da looking nervously in front. His hands were in his sleeves and seemed to be shaking. He did not even noticed that Nangong Ping had called out to him.
Nangong Ping was very startled inside him but he turned and smiled at Ye Manqing. “You don’t have to be afraid, there is nothing…”
Before he could finish, a man appeared in the distant. He was walking backward as though something happened in front and caused him unable to turn and run. And there was music composed by flutes coming forth from his direction.
The sound of flutes became hurried as the man became even more tensed and totally did not move.
Nangong Ping sighed and shouted. “Friend…” Before he could finish shouting, the man turned around and ran towards them. He had a most terrifying look on his face and he was also bald.
Nangong Ping was stunned. “Fri…end…” Before he could finish, this bald man ran behind him.
Ye Manqing glanced at him and looked in the front. She was startled for she saw tens of dozens of poisonous snakes crawling all over. With a startled cry, she moved into the embrace of Nangong Ping unwittingly.
The sounds of the flutes were playing from high pitch to low. Behind those snakes, were several mysterious beggars and they were eerie looking.
Therefore Ye Manqing right wrist moved and hugged Nangong Ping even more tightly. Suddenly she discovered that Nangong Ping was shaking too. She felt strange and her watery eyes glance around and saw that it was because it was strange bald man that was shaking Nangong Ping for he too had caught hold of him.
Nangong Ping took a glance at Ye Manqing. He did not know if he feels startled, surprised or delight because he could protect her. Maybe it was some of each of the three feeling.
The swarms of snakes crawled onto the ground. Although their movements seemed slow but it was in fact extremely fast.
Wan Da scattered some yellow sulfur around. His eyes looked intensely at the snakes. Luckily the snakes halted as soon as they were near the sulfur.
Nangong Ping keen eyes saw a ground of around sixteen beggars approaching. They were all eerie looking and filled with an air of malevolent but said as they beg. “Merciful Master, will you do some good as to give me something from your sack.”
Nangong Ping was startled and feeling strange at the same time. Therefore he could resist and turned to looked at the strange bald old man. He was dressed poorly and carried a hemp sack. And the sack looked like it got nothing inside. There seemed nothing worth begging for.
He really could not figure out the intricate of all what it was about. But a righteous spirit rose from him, one that required the strong to help the weak caused him to feel sympathy with this pitiful bald old man.
Wan Da suddenly asked. “Friends, did you come from the Hell of Hell’ that is from beyond the Pass?”
Some of the beggars were surprised and one of them step forward and said word by word. “Do you know me?”
Wan Da shivered for the voice was ghastly and he stumbled as he tried to gather his voice. “Are you the Ghastly Beggars’ that everyone in the Pugilist has been whispering about?”
The eerie beggar coldly hissed and said. “That is right, Hell of Hell, Ghastly Beggars, Poor malicious Spirits, Malevolent Spirits…hehe. If you have not descend to the nineteen levels of hell, how did you know us malicious spirits?”
“Hehe,” He laughed coldly for a few times before he sung mysteriously. “Us hungry ghosts will never go back to Hell unless we given a offering, or else calamity will befall those we haunt.”
Wan Da solemnly said. “The Ghastly Beggars is called call the Hungry Ghost Gang and never extort anything less than one thousand gold and the thousands silver. Friend, is there a mistake?”
Nangong Ping searched his memory for accounts of those strange beggars. He could not resist glancing at the bald old man as he asked. “The Ghastly Beggars that never step into the Central Plains would enter the Pass for this bald old man that looked like a beggar?”
The eerie man coldly reply. “It is not you we are looking for. Do you want the ghosts to come knocking at you too?”
He was in front of Nangong Ping in an instant as he warned coldly. “Young children do not antagonize the ghosts and moreover shall not block the ghosts, do you understand?”
Nangong Ping said in a clear voice. “Are you Chief Yi Feng or Chief Song Zhong? He was solemn, neither afraid nor startled.
Suddenly the eerie man laughed. “Although Malicious Ghost Song Zhong is not here but I Hungry Ghost Yi Feng is here. Since you know our background, are you waiting for us to eat you?”
The beggars around stomped and clapped, laughed eerily. “Eat you up! Eat you up!”
Ye Manqing had already calmed down by now. Suddenly she hummed coldly and said, “Pretending to be deities and playing ghosts, so useless.”
‘Hungry Ghost’ Yu Feng laughed. “A eighteen nineteen grown up girl that has crumbled into the embrace of a man can still say so many tall words. There is no place for a shameless female ghost like you in the nineteen level of hell.”
Ye Manqing cheeks turned red; she was flushed and looked vexed as she called out softly. “What did you say?” As she waved her hand to deal him with a blow.
But before she could do so, Nangong Ping gently hold her on her sleeves
and said. “Wait awhile.”
Ye Manqing asked. “These gang of people are playacting as deities and ghosts, obviously vile people. Why must we talk so much to them?”
Nangong Ping was solemn as he said. “As beggar, they have a right to ask others for aid. There are all kinds and types of people in the Pugilist. Even if they want to be ghost, it is not really a evil thing. They have no ill intentions toward us and were merely asking us to go away. How can we come to blows with them?” ‘Hungry Ghost’ Yi Feng was full of mocking but when he heard those
words, he became startled. Ever since he was in Pugilist, there was none that ever analyzed him the way Nangong Ping did.
Ye Manqing was startled as well and gently lowered her hands.
This cold demeanor and haughty maiden suddenly became very demure all of a sudden.
The bald old man stumbled and exclaimed. “You…you…you…Do you really want these gang of hungry ghosts to steal a poor old man’s things?”
Nangong Ping smiled and said in a clear manner. “I have long heard that Ghastly Beggars Gang traveled the mortal realm to take from the rich but it will never take more than half from their target and they take to help the poor. But today I am surprise that you will force a poor old man!”
Hungry Ghost Yi Feng laughed and said. “I did not expect you will know so much about our gang for someone so young as you.” He changed his tone and the eerie manner was gone.
Wan Da secretly sighed. “Many years ago, I mention a few things about the Ghastly Beggars to him. I never expect him to remember so clearly.”
Hungry Ghost Yi Feng ceased his laughing and said. “Since you know about us in such detail, you must also know that we never go back empty handed.
Therefore it better for you don’t to be a nosy porker.” The bald old man shrieked loudly. “Save me…”
Nangong Ping solemnly said. “If you want to force such a poor old man, I will be very disappointed with the reputation of your gang.”
Hungry Ghost Yi Feng suddenly laughed. “Poor old man? You say he is a poor old man? If he is not wealthier than you by ten times and if his wealth is not ill-gotten, will the Ghastly Ghosts be after him?”
Nangong Ping was startled and the bald old man pleaded. “Don’t listen to him, how will I have money…”
Ye Manqing asked. “The one with the surname Yi, you say this man is richer than him by ten times?”
Hungry Ghost Yi Feng laughed. “Indeed.”
Ye Manqing asked. “What if you are wrong, so what will you do?”
Yi Feng mocked. “The Ghastly Beggars have eyes like lamps. If we are wrong, we will go hungry for ten years and we will turn back tonight…”
Ye Manqing asked, “Really?”
Yi Feng sarcastically laughed. “Ignorant naïve girl, what do you know? Although this old thing looks poor but in fact his wealth numbered in the tens of thousands. Today we just want to take half of his riches from his sack, it is considered to be of great courtesy. The Ghastly Beggars have never take from the poor or else we will never allow a little girl like you to say so much.”
Ye Manqing coldly said. “Do you know who he is?”
Hungry Ghost Yi Feng looked at Nangong Ping for awhile before he took five steps to the left and right. Nangong Ping looked perplexed and took another five steps as well so that he could face him.
Yi Feng suddenly laughed and coldly said. “Maybe you look like a scion of a wealthy family but it a pity that you do not have even ten silver.”
Nangong Ping was suddenly very startled and secretly thought. “I have heard that in Pugilist, some people have such excellent eye sight and hearing that they can hear from the foot steps and movements of the other to discern whether they are carrying valuables. I never expect that this Hungry Ghost would have such sharp eyes and hearing.”
Ye Manqing questioned. “This old man have silver on him?”
Yi Feng replied. “Although no silver but many bank notes. But what I want is not the bank notes but…”
Before he could finish, that old bald man suddenly turned and ran away.
Hungry Ghost Yi Feng mocked. “Old thing, can you run?” Before he had finished, the bald old man had returned because in front of him were many green snakes.
Yi Feng said. “Little maiden, it is useless to say so much. Unless it is the young master of the Nangong Aristocracy Family, there is no one else in the world that can be richer than this old thing. Why get into so much trouble because of this matter? It is lucky that you have seen me today. If it is the Malicious Ghost, you are going to suffer.”
Ye Manqing coldly laughed awhile. “Do you…”
Nangong Ping was solemn as he said. “I am indeed Nangong Ping.”
Yi Feng eyes widened and he backed off three steps then suddenly hit toward Nangong Ping with a blow.
This surprise attack was as fast as lightning but Nangong Ping covered his chest with his left hand and his right finger extended out, hit against his Qu Chi accupoint.
This stance can attack and defend at the same time was one of the secret techniques of the ‘Four Stances of the Ascending Dragon’. But before he could complete his strokes, Hungry Ghost Yi Feng had backed off another three steps.
He sighed. “Indeed is the disciple of the Divine Dragon and from the Nangong Aristocracy Family. Fine, fine…Old thing, today we spare you.”
He waved his hand and the music changed. All the snakes in the area suddenly flew into the sleeves of the Ghastly Beggars. Nangong Ping said, “Chief Yi, please wait.”
Yi Feng said. “After losing a gamble, naturally we have to leave. Although the Hungry Ghosts Gang is hateful by everyone but we are not one that break our promises. Even the green snake that this old man had killed, we will not ask him for payment!”
Those Ghastly Beggars indeed moved like the spirits. In an instant, they were all gone.
Ye Manqing lovingly smiled. “Although these group of people enjoy acting like deities and ghosts, but they are not that bad!”
However Nangong Ping was left pondering in his thoughts. “The Ghastly Beggars Gang must have some connection with my Mentor Master. Or else how will he be able to determine my martial origin based solely on just one stroke?”
Wan Da said. “Although the Hungry Ghost Gang are not evil or good, but those that they targeted are wealthy that got their wealth in an ill gotten manner.” He looked at the bald old man.
The bald old man on the other hand was looking stunned and at Nangong Ping. He seemed to be admiring yet envy at the same time. Suddenly he bowed three times respectfully to Nangong Ping with his hands together.
Nangong Ping was startled and said. “This is a small matter and I did not do my best. Old Sir, you are too respectful.”
The bald old man said. “Indeed, indeed. It is a small matter. I just need to show just an small appreciation of thanks.”
Nangong Ping and Ye Manqing was surprised only to hear him adding. “But you have saved my possession and not my life, therefore that was my first bow and it must be done very respectfully.”
Nangong Ping and Ye Manqing looked at one another for awhile.
The bald old man continued. “The Nangong Aristocracy Family have wealth that are so exceedingly and surely must be richer than me. Therefore how can I not bow to you? Therefore my second bow must be as just as respectable.”
Ye Manqing was stunned for awhile before she asked. “From what you mean, this second bow is for his riches?”
The old bald man answered. “Indeed.”
He continued. “This third bow is to congratulates him for having such a rich parents. Other than the Emperor, his parents can be considered number one. Such fortunate thing, if I do not respectfully bow, then how can I know what's good for me?”
Nangong Ping was totally stunned. He had not expected to hear such a “ridiculous” theory coming from this world.
When Ye Manqing had heard the bald old man explanations, she could not help laughing. “Therefore you mean to say that even if others were to save your life, you may not be grateful or respect him?”
The bald old man replied. “Naturally.”
Ye Manqing asked. “Is riches so important?”
The bald old man answered in a very solemn manner. “In all the creations, there is nothing more important than riches. In all the creations, the most valuable is silver. More valuable than silver is two silver, more valuable than two silver, is…”
Even before he had finished, Ye Manqing could not help but broke into an alluring laughter.
Nangong Ping was too embarrassed as he asked. “If…” He did not finish it as he was trying to suppress his laugh too.
When the bald old man saw that they were laughing, he was puzzled and said. “Did I say anything wrong?”
Ye Manqing replied. “Indeed, indeed. More important than two silver is three silver, more important than…” Suddenly she fall into Nangong Ping’s embrace and could not stop laughing.
Wan Da laughed. “Then those Ghastly Beggars are not wrong, you must be really very rich.”
The bald old man turned ashen as he gripped his sack even more tightly as he said. “I have no money, I have no money…” In his anxiety, he switched to his dialect.
Nangong Ping could not help laughing aloud and said. “Old sir, the way you treasure riches, I am filled with admiration…”
Ye Manqing added. “But those people that want your money, they are gone now and you can leave now…” Suddenly she remembered that she had to go too so her smiles ceased and she said softly. “I have to go too.”
Wan Da sighed and said. “It most fortunate to meet you again. Now that I know that you are safe, I am really very happy. But now, I have to go beyond the Pass for a time. I wonder where you be going?”
Nangong Ping said. “I…”
He suddenly felt very lonely and he was no longer laughing. He sighed. “I want to go home for awhile and then…alas…” He lifted his head and his eyes swept the around surrounding.
Ye Manqing bowed her head and asked. “Then…then…”
Nangong Ping sighed and asked her. “Maiden Ye where will you be going?” Ye Manqing lifted her eyes and looked at him. “You…you…”
She was still holding the Immortal Divine Dragon’s Will in her hand and she was clenching it tightly now. In her eyes, it was filled with much melancholy and wishful hopes. She wished for Nangong Ping to tell her ‘that word’ and she would follow him forever, till the end of time.
Nangong Ping his heart aching as he tried to say something. “I…I…” He could not force himself to finish. On what ground, what right did he have to ask her to stay?
Wan Da sighed and said. “If Maiden Ye have nothing much to do, why not go with him to tour Jiangnan. Please take care, both of you. I have to go now.” He turned around with his head lowered, and left.
Nangong Ping lifted his head and asked. “Di Yang is now heavily poisoned and his whereabouts are unknown. Don’t you want to accompany me to search for him?”
Wan Da halted his steps and turned around.
The bald old man suddenly asked. “Does that Di Yang has a sword in his hands and is heavily poisoned?”
Wan Da answered delightfully. “Indeed.”
The bald old man said. “He has already been taken away by the Glamorous Soul of the Hungry Ghosts Gang. That Glamorous Soul Second Mistress Yi Luo had taken him beyond the Pass to seek treatment. I’m afraid that I was unable to escape if not for him. It seemed that she has taken a liking to him and definitely will not let him suffer. Therefore you don’t have to worry about him.”
Nangong Ping sighed in relief but he could not help feeling perplexed. “I wonder what sort of a woman is that ‘Glamorous Soul’ Second Mistress Yi Luo?”
Wan Da said, “I will search for Di Yang on my way beyond the Pass. From what I think, that Second Mistress Yi is not a bad person. Moreover unless she has fallen in love with Di Yang, why will she take him away in a hurry to seek treatment? If she really fallen in love with Di Yang, then she will try her best to save him. What is love that can split even gold into half? Love is something that is as mysterious as magic, when it comes, it cannot be fend off.”
Ye Manqing felt her heart beating very fast and her ears were repeating the last line of Wan Da. When she lifted her head, Wan Da had gone far.
So she unwittingly sighed melancholy while Nangong Ping looked very troubled.
Suddenly from afar, Wan Da sung. “Too many love will surely bred sorrows, too many sorrows will surely lead to love, hope that all the lovers in the world…”
Ye Manqing stood motionless on the spot before she suddenly turned her head and walked away. She had waited for a long time for Nangong Ping to say ‘that word’ but he did not say it. Therefore this girl finally walked away holding on to her pride. Nangong Ping looked at her in idiocy from her back view. And he too recalled Wan Da song. “Too many love will surely bred sorrows, too many sorrows will surely lead to love…”
Suddenly his vision became a blur and many images appeared in front of him. Sometimes it was Mei Yinxue, sometimes it was Ye Manqing.
After many days of hunger and exertion, the mental blows caused by emotions, the use of too much vital energies and the sorrows that was caused by love…he suddenly felt as light as cloud and finally collapsed with a stump onto the ground.
The bald old man cried out in surprised. Ye Manqing who was walking from afar, the Ye Manqing who was walking in ever slowing pace when she heard that startled cry could not help but turned her slim body around. When she saw that Nangong Ping had collapsed on the ground, even if she had to fly, she would do so. In the world, there was no force that could stop her from abandoning him.
If a person with a strong internal strength foundation were to suddenly fall sick, then it would be a very serious sickness.
A big horse carriage appeared in the misty road as it left Chang An, past Mt.
Zhongnan and traveling to Xun Yang in great haste.
That bald old man tightened his hands onto his sack as he heard a sorrowful, melancholy sighing. He shouted loudly so that his voice would be heard and not drowned by the moving wheels of the carriage. “Little maiden, do you have silver on you?”
After a while, an indignant voice was heard. “Yes!”
The bald old man said in a serious tone. “No matter where we go, silver is definitely a must have.”
He then relaxed to smile and close his eyes and to regain his mental strength.
When the horse carriage reached Xun Yang, it was nightfall. He opened his eyes and shouted. “Little maiden, how much silver do you have on you?”
An icy cold voice was heard. “Not few.” (Sarcastically)
The bald old man shouted again. “Let find a big Inn with the best food
The bald old man pointed at the sick Nangong Ping and asked the inn assistant to carry him to the room. Ye Manqing lowered her head as she alighted from the carriage. Then he asked her. “Little maiden, take five silver here to pay for the driver.”
The driver was very happy and broke into many thanks and appreciation. When the bald old man took the silver from Ye Manqing, he began to mutter. “Five silver, five silver…” as he placed it in the hands of the driver who was still thanking him profusely. “But first you must give me a change of three silver thirty two copper.”
The driver was stunned and gave him the change, cursing him in his heart.
The bald old man walked proudly inside the Inn and placed the silvers in front of the shop assistant and told him. “Go prepare a big accommodation with adjacent rooms and a ten silver feast.”
The inn assistant thought. “This man although he looked poor but he is generous with his tips.” And he thanks him with all his heart and shown him to his accommodation.
After awhile the inn assistant was back. He asked happily. “Old master do you want to have some wine?”
The bald old man solemnly said. “Many accidents happen because of wine. If I am drunk, I will lose my money and belongings anytime. You are young and you must know that money is not easy to earn.”
He was stunned but he kept praising him nevertheless.
The bald old man asked again. “Just now, where is the silver I give you?” He forced himself to smile and said. “It is still with me.”
The bald old man said. “Go and change it all to copper coins and hurry back.”
He was stunned and almost stood rooted to the ground. After awhile, he secretly cursed him and went off.
The bald old man looked at the feast on the table and rubbed his hands. “Little maiden, you need to take care of a sick person. Therefore I will eat alone.”
There was a cold demeanor sound coming from the hall of the room. The bald old man muttered. “If I did not know how rich is the Nangong
Aristocracy Family, no matter how charming and alluring you are, I will never travel with you.” Then he began to put down his sack, lift the chopsticks and began to eat and drink heartily.
He really ate very heartily and there were no leftovers at all.
When the shop assistant returned with a dispirit look later and placed the copper coins on the table, the bald old man counted every single coin and placed three copper on his hands. But after some muttering, he placed another two copper coins down. And he said most painstaking. “It is to reward you.”
The shop assistant was stunned and finally he coldly said. “It better that you keep it yourself.”
The bald old man was very happy as he said. “Fine, fine. Then I keep for myself.”
He started to gather all the coins, placed it in his sack and then walked to another room and closed the door tightly.
When the shop assistant went to the main hall, he could not resist telling another of his colleague as he shook his head. “In this world, there are many misers. But I never seen such a horrible miser in my life.”
Lit by just a lamp, Ye Manqing held a bowl of dense medicine as she gently blew. This is her own prescription and she boiled it herself. Therefore she must first tasted it herself.
There were all sorts of noise from outside the door and the moaning sound of Nangong Ping caused her to be very confused in her thoughts. She extended her shivering hands to the unconscious Nangong Ping and placed the bowl of medicine for him to drink.
Although she had not known him for a long time, the number of times that she met him were even more pitiful but she had already had a fond feeling for this young man who seemed to radiate light and warm that never seemed to end. This fondness became unforgettable.
“Friendship is linked together but love can happen in an instant.” She remembered a philosopher once told her that. Not once but many times did she question and belittle this saying. But now, she had understood the true meaning of that phrase.
She remembered Gu Hong, Di Yang and that outstanding young hero ‘Cloud Breaker Hand’ Zhuo Bufan. She had once shared her loneliness, her hardships with them on the peak of Huashan. After many years of mutual sharing the same loneliness, hardships, she had began to understand their feeling, their resolute, and the price they had to pay for their ‘hatred’ and ‘honor’. Therefore under the accumulation of a long period of sharing together, she began to feel the formation of friendship that was between them and her.
But the feeling that she had for Nangong Ping and her happened in that instant when they had first met. The attachment and affection that she had for him continued long after she walked away with her Mentor Mistress’s maids, when she returned to the bamboo hut, when she carried her longings for her Mentor Mistress with sorrowful tears, when she go down of Huashan. Ever since, she had not stopped thinking about Nangong Ping during those days that seemed never to end, she simply could not forget about Nangong Ping’s composed face and his sharp speech.
She was unable to guess what happened in that bamboo hut in Huashan just like she was unable to guess what Nangong Ping feel about her.
Three days had past, for the whole of three days, she was still trapped in the confused state of her feelings. After three days that seemed never to end, her eyes became puffy, her senses lost. Although the medicine quantity that she had to boil, taste and feed became fewer and fewer each day but her worries and burden increased and not decreased because the unconscious Nangong Ping was still unconscious.
She had already started to loathe the nameless bald old man deeply. She refused to have anything to do with this vile old man whether it was in words or looking at him. But she could not refused staying with this old man. She had many reasons of her own. She had to take into consideration the views of others, the dignity, the proper propriety rites of the times, the gossips, her natural coyness coupled with her shyness caused her unable to dare stay alone with Nangong Ping in the same room. Therefore she did not dare to refuse this wall; this greedy vile old man and stayed in the same common room.
The next day at noon, Nangong Ping had regained conscious and he slowly regained his movements. Ye Manqing gently carried him to sit onto the bed. This cold demeanor beautiful maiden had now become so tired, so fragile. Nangong Ping did not dare to look at her, he lowered his head and sighed. “When I am sick, it must be really hard on you.”
Ye Manqing softly laughed and said. “As long…as long as you recover from your sickness, no matter what I have to do, I will be happy to do so.”
Nangong Ping was jolted. He had never dreamed that she would say such gentle words. This was so different from what he had known. He did not know that in this short three days, a kind of womanly softness that was in her heart changed the way Ye Manqing regarded her attitude to life. A type of irresistible force that caused her feeling to flow out to Nangong Ping unwittingly and she was unable to use her cold haughty words and attitude on him as a pretense anymore.
Nangong Ping could not help but looked at her and saw that her face was flustered lightly with red but it could not hide the tiredness and fragile of her look. He suddenly thought of a poem as he lowered his head and watched her leave the room. He felt a conflict in his heart from the many emotions. He tried to control his feeling but failed miserably.
Suddenly from the dinning room, was the laughing sound of that bald old man. “Is your sickness better now?” Nangong Ping replied. “Thanks for the concern of old sir, I…”
The bald old man laughed. “If I were you, I would surely fall sick for a few days more.”
Nangong Ping was startled.
He added. “If it isn’t for your serious sickness, how would that baby girl allows me to stay here, eat and drink heartily? If it weren’t for your serious sickness, how would that baby girl show her affections for you? If you are sick for a few days, I can eat a few more days and you can enjoy some blissful and warm moments. This is a joyous thing so why are you not happy?”
Although he looked hateful but what he said was so sharp and direct.
Ye Manqing bowed her head and her face flustered with red. She became shy and coy because it hit her in her innermost heart.
Nangong Ping forced himself to smile as he said. “If old sir, if you are free, you can travel with us…” Because he suddenly realized that he could not travel together with Ye Manqing or he would surely be unable to control his feelings. He quickly added. “When my illness is over, I will accompany old sir to eat and drink heartily. This, I can still afford to pay.”
The bald old man laughed. “Marvelous, marvelous…” Suddenly he ceased his laughter and said solemnly. “Even though the two of you invite me but I will never feel appreciated or grateful. This is because the two of you have a hidden intention for me to accompany you. As for me…haha! I only get to eat and drink heartily.”
Those few words hit right on the mark in Nangong Ping and Ye Manqing innermost hearts.
Nangong Ping sighed and said. “If old sir, you have any needs, I can render you with some assistance…”
The bald old man laughed for awhile before he said solemnly. “Do I look like some one that need pity from others?”
Nangong Ping said. “I can ask the shop assistants to get a few good clothing for old sir.”
The bald old man shook with both his hands and solemnly exclaimed. “You and I have no feuds with one another, why then are you trying to harm me?”
Nangong Ping was shocked and asked. “Harm…you?”
The bald old man got up and walked to Nangong Ping, pointed to his robe that did not look like robe, clothing that is not clothing and said. “Can't you tell how convenient and comfortable is my clothing? Next he pointed to his smooth head that was bald and said. “Do you know why I become a bald head? I spend a lot of efforts and blood to be a bald. Now I don’t have to cut my hair, don’t have to wash my head, don’t have to tie my hair. Do you know how much efforts and blood for me to research this efficient and not wasteful method to save my time and money? Now that you want to give me clothing! If I use your clothing, I will have to worry for that clothing all the time and will surely waste a lot of my time that should be use on earning money. So you are harming me.”
Nangong Ping and Ye Manqing looked at one another in astonishment for they had never heard of such logic in their entire life. Therefore for sometime, they were unable to answer him.
The bald old man angrily hummed and returned to the table to eat. As he was eating, he was asking. “If the both of you want me to accompany you, please do not ever mention this matter ever again. Haiz, haiz! If it isn’t for the fact that your riches are indeed worthy of my respect, or else I would have left already.”
Ye Manqing secretly hummed and turned her head while Nangong Ping sighed deeply and asked. “Is riches really so important?”
The bald old man sighed and said. “Even if I use a thousand phrases and words, I can never explain the importance of riches to a rich man like you. But after you have undergo a tribulation, then without a need for me to explain, you will know the importance of riches.”
Nangong Ping suddenly paused to ponder. “I wish I can have a taste of being poor. But how difficult is it for me to be poor.” He laughed when he thought of that.
The bald old man in all his seriousness asked. “What I say is all true. Why are you laughing?”
Nangong Ping slowly said. “I am laughing because I did not know old sir’s name yet.”
The bald old man said. “Name is not important. You can simple call me Qian Chi (One that is obsessed with money).
Nangong Ping smiled. “Qian Chi…Qian Chi…” Suddenly he became serious. “Just now I was laughing not because of this reason. Old sir, you…”
The bald old man ‘Qian Chi’ said. “The thoughts that are inside a man heart, no one have a right to ask and no right to guess. What you are thinking doesn’t concern me. To me, their words and actions are sufficient. Even if they hate me in their heart, I don’t care. If I am always thinking very hard of what others are thinking about me, then won’t I become a mad man?”
This word whipped Nangong Ping hard into his most innermost heart. He lowered his head and was silence for a long time.
By then Qian Chi had finished eating as he got up, he turned and looked at Ye Manqing and said in a monotone. “Maiden, I advise you not to bother about others think in their hearts then your troubles will be lessen a lot.”
Ye Manqing bowed her head in deep thoughts. When she lift her head, the bald old man had already gone to the courtyard.
Suddenly there appeared several men with sabres and another strong man with a red flag carrying a wooden chest and they walked into the another courtyard.
There were all alert and tense. The last man of their group looked at Qian Chi carefully before he closed the door to the courtyard.
Qian Chi eyes glow as he smiled. “The Red Flag Escort Agency, the Red Flag Escort Agency…”
Nangong Ping was in sober thoughts for a long time before he walked into his room.
Qian Chi began to mutter. “After eating, one must sleep. Alas, alas…” Therefore he walked to his room too and closed the door tightly.
Ye Manqing lifted her head and looked at the door of Nangong Ping’s room and looked at the bald old man too. She suddenly sighed and slowly walked into the courtyard…
The sounds thin down and the lights began to dim but Ye Manqing did not know how long had she been standing. She only heard the dong of the watchmen…First watch, second watch and soon it was the third watch!
Ye Manqing looked alone at the empty sky for a long time. She aspersed for a long time in her heart and asked why she had been forgotten. She hated herself for falling for a man whose heart belongs to another. Why?
Suddenly from the back of the roof, there was a soft laughter. A man whispered. “Who are you forlorn for?”
Ye Manqing furrowed and her slim body rose up and she asked in a low voice. “Who?” By now her slim body had landed on the rooftop and saw a man running in the darkness and mocking. “Who are you forlorn for?”
This man was very fast which startled Ye Manqing. His mocking struck hard into her soul as she said in a low voice. “Stand where you are!”
She turned around and noticed that the light in his room had not vanished yet. That lonely room looked exactly like she was.
Facing the vast rooftop, she felt very angry because she was unable to vent it out. She expended all her best efforts to search for that stranger. She did not know why she wanted combed the area in a frantic search, was it for the stranger or the anger inside her that needed to be vent.
Nangong Ping did not know that Ye Manqing was in the courtyard.
Although he tried to mediate but his mind was in a state of confusion. He did not know that Ye Manqing was now on the rooftop.
After some time he managed to calm himself down. Slowly his mind becomes peaceful and cast him into a blank…
After a long time, he suddenly heard a voice from the courtyard and he was alerted to it and saw a man shadow jump down from the roof. His swiftness movement skill was not weak.
Nangong Ping was startled and opened the window and suddenly he saw Ye Manqing with her long hair in a mess, the melancholy Ye Manqing looking idiocy outside his window.
At this moment when their eyes looked at one another, there was a spark. In his heart came a wave of ripples and he did not know if he should avoid her alluring watery eyes.
Ye Manqing sighed in her heart but asked. “You have not sleep yet?”
Nangong Ping shook his head and suddenly asked. “Maiden Ye, did you see someone?”
Ye Manqing said. “Earlier, I saw a man in night clothing when I am in the courtyard. I try to follow him but I did not manage to!”
Nangong Ping was startled and his eyes widened. “Even with Maiden Ye’s swiftness movement skill, you are still unable to catch up with him!”
Ye Manqing flustered and bowed her head. “I also do not know that in this place, there will be such a martial exponent. What is even strange about this man is that I don’t know if he is a bad or good guy, an enemy or a friend, why did he come here? It is indeed very puzzling.”
Nangong Ping was wondering as well and slowly said. “He shouldn’t have any bad intention or else why did he not attack?”
Although he had say so just to comfort her but he was secretly sighing. He knew that at this moment, his enemies in the Fraternity far exceed his friends.
Because of her, because of such a heartless cold blood maiden, why did he have to sacrifice so much?! There were so many powerful enemies around to face. How could he face and explain his feeling?
As the two of them faced one another but there were no words, Nangong Ping sighed. “The cold wind is strong tonight, Maiden Ye you should come in!”
Although his words contain only a slight concern but that was enough to make Ye Manqing very delight.
She walked into the dining room with a alluring smile while Nangong Ping welcomed her inside. He lit a lamp and both of them sat inside but none of them dared to look into one another directly.
Suddenly the bald old man walked into the dining hall in a sleepy manner. He laughed. “Alas both of you are such romantic staying overnight just to chat, haha…young people.”
Just then the shop assistant approached and said. “You guests are awake so early!” As he poured them tea, he asked. “Please forgive me for asking but the meal and room fees are due…”
When the bald old man ‘Qian Chi’ had heard those last words, he suddenly turned around and walked into his room and closed the door.
Nangong Ping smiled. “It alright. You just have to tell me the accounts.”
The shop assistant smiled broadly. “Not much not much. Although that old sir have the lion share because of his feasting, it is only ninety-three silver and seven copper coins.”
This was indeed not a small amount but in Nangong Ping’s eyes, it was like dirt. But on second thought, he realized he had no silver on him so he turned his head and smiled. “Maiden Ye, can you help to pay for the lodging first.” As he was born from a wealthy family, he thought very lightly about money. Therefore he can ask in such an unintentional way.
Ye Manqing was startled and she too smiled. “I rarely bring silver.”
She knew Nangong Ping’s background therefore she did not mind at all.
Nangong Ping was slightly startled and he saw that the shop assistant was now staring at him without a single trace of smile.
Nangong Ping suddenly realized that he had given everything that was valuable on him to others therefore he calmly said. “Go fetch a brush and ink for me, I will write a I.O.U and you can instantly get the silver.”
The shop assistant looked most unwilling and just when he was about to turn his back, the bald old man opened the door a little and said loudly to him. “What are you afraid of? Do you know who this master is? Not to mention one hundred silver, even a few tens of thousands of silver, if he is willing to write on that IOU, you can get it instantly.”
The shop assistant looked questioning at Nangong Ping.
The bald old man ‘Qian Chi’ laughed. “Let me tell you, he is the Young master of the Nangong Aristocracy Family!”
The shop assistant turned ashen and Nangong Ping thought. “These people are atypical. When they heard that…”
The shop assistant suddenly laughed and his thoughts were interrupted. He coldly said. “Although I have seen many people who cheat for their food and drink but I have never saw anyone that as vile, stupid as your group. To think that you can think of this…”
Ye Manqing opened her apricot eyes and said sternly. “What did you say?”
The shop assistant unwittingly took a step back but his mocking face remained. “You don’t even know that all the businesses that belonged to the Nangong Aristocracy Family for hundreds of miles have been sold three days ago to others. And the workers under the Nangong Aristocracy Family have all been dispersed. And you even dare to impersonate as the young master of the Nangong Aristocracy Family, heng, heng! If you don’t pay out by today, heng, heng..” As he looked angrily at them.
Nangong Ping had been shocked beyond words and he was now on the ground while Ye Manqing looked lost and did not know what to do.
What a sudden change of events, it happened so suddenly. Why did the Nangong Aristocracy which had wealth that could rival a kingdom suddenly sold all its businesses?
The reasons were beyond understanding!
Even the bald old man who was standing by the side of the door was stunned.
It was the most extremely embarrassing moment of Nangong Ping life. Just then there was a commotion outside.
Many terrified cries were heard. “Oh dear…Oh dear…” Even the shop assistant was startled by it and turned to look.
Nangong Ping suddenly remembered the incident last night and Ye Manqing remembered the strange man that she had saw.
“Is it because there occurred murders last night?”
Without thinking, Nangong Ping moved into the courtyard, followed by Ye Manqing. But no one noticed the movement of that bald old man ‘Qian Chi’.
There were a lot of commotion and people in the courtyard. “Very strange, very strange. Last time we did not hear anything.”
Some say. “What is more strange is that it happened to even the renowned Red Flag Escort Agency. I wonder who is the extraordinary people that commit this crime.”
Nangong Ping swept his eyes around and he saw blood all over, it really horrible. Just as Nangong Ping was about to rush inside, a man stopped him and said. “It is forbidden at the moment to enter…”
Before he could finish, Nangong Ping had pushed him away and the man almost fall. One must know that Nangong Ping had been stricken with an illness and his strength had not recovered yet. But in his anger and surprise, he had exerted all his might therefore even though he feels regretful for his action but he did not hesitate to push opened the door and witnessed with such appalling at the corpses that were all over the place!