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Sword of the Third Young Master - Chapter 2

Chapter Two – A Change of Fortunes

The Raven said, “I’m not certain that I can kill you now!”

Yan ShiSan laughed loudly. He suddenly realized that this man truly was a raven – at least ravens would not tell lies.

The Raven continued, “Especially that stance you used just now to kill Guan Wai Fei Ying.”

Yan ShiSan laughed, “You can’t break through it?”

The Raven replied, “I can’t think of anyone who could break through that stance.”

Yan ShiSan asked, “You believe that, that is the ultimate unparalleled swordplay?”

The Raven replied, “I have seen the great masters from both the Seven Major Sword Sects and the Four Grand Families.”

Yan ShiSan asked, “What do you think of them?”

The Raven replied, “Their swordplay are all too conservative, they value their own lives too much. Therefore, they are inferior to you.”

Yan ShiSan sighed and said, “Your insights are quite good, but your knowledge is not too broad.”

The Raven replied, “Oh?”

Yan ShiSan continued, “I know of a man, for whom it would be very easy to break though that stance of mine.”

The Raven’s expressions changed, “You’ve seen his swordplay?”

Yan ShiSan nodded and sighed, “Now that is truly the ultimate unparalleled swordplay.”

The Raven asked, “Who is this man?”

Yan ShiSan did not answer directly, but only held out three fingers.

The Raven asked, “Three Hand Sword Jin Fei?”

Legend has it that when Three Hand Sword dueled with someone, it was as if he had three hands. A single sword also seemed to transform into three. One only needed to hear his name to be able to imagine the quickness of his swordplay and the numerous changes of his stances.

Yan ShiSan, however, shook his head, “To truly kill someone, you don’t need three hands, nor do you need three swords.”

To truly kill someone, one sword is enough.

The Raven said, “So you’re not talking about him?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “No!”

The Raven asked, “Who is it?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “Third Young Master.”

The Raven asked, “Which family’s third young master?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “In front of the Green Water Lake underneath the Jade Cloud Mountain.”

The Raven’s fists clenched. Yan ShiSan continued, “His sword is also an unparalleled treasured sword.”

The Raven’s pupils contracted. Yan ShiSan continued, “But I advise that you definitely do not go see him.”

The Raven suddenly laughed. He rarely laughed, and his laughter was erratic yet strange. Yan ShiSan said, “This is not a joke.”

The Raven replied, “I’m laughing at you.”

Yan ShiSan said, “Oh?”

The Raven replied, “You obviously knew that, since I already came here, then I would never let you go.”

Yan ShiSan agreed. The Raven continued, “Although I’m not certain that I can kill you, you also are not certain that you can kill me.”

Yan ShiSan admitted this. The Raven continued, “Therefore you want to provoke me to go to Jade Cloud Mountain and challenge that Third Young Master first.”

Yan ShiSan laughed also. The Raven asked, “This is a joke to you?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “No, I’m laughing at myself.”

The Raven asked, “Oh?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “Because you have guessed at once what I was thinking.”

The Raven said, “You don’t want to dual with me now?”

Yan ShiSan said, “Not very much.”

The Raven asked, “Why?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “Because I have another appointment.”

The Raven asked, “What kind of appointment?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “An appointment with death.”

The Raven asked, “Where is the appointment?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “In front of the Green Water Lake underneath the Jade Cloud Mountain.”

The Raven asked, “You’re still going even though you know that you can’t defeat him?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “An appointment of death will not dissolve until we meet.”

The Raven asked, “Are you perhaps intentionally going to your death?”

Yan ShiSan laughed again, and lightly said, “Do you perhaps find living to be very fun?”

The Raven shut his mouth. Yan ShiSan continued to laugh, his laughter contained an indescribable expression of mockery, and he said, “Those who practice the sword sooner or later will inevitably die under someone else’s sword, there isn’t even a place to escape from it.”

The Raven remained silent. Yan ShiSan continued, “I have killed countless in my life. If I could die under the sword of the world’s number one swordsman, then I’d die without any regrets.”

The Raven looked at him and stared at him for a very long time. Suddenly he said, “Good. You can go.”

Yan ShiSan cupped his hands, did not say another word, and turned around and left. He did not walk very far, but stopped again, because he realized that The Raven was following him the whole time, as if he was his shadow. The Raven stopped as well and watched him. Yan ShiSan said, “I understand your intentions.”

The Rave asked, “Oh?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “If I can go, then why can’t you.”

The Raven noted, “You’re not stupid.”

Yan ShiSan said, “But you don’t have to go together with me.”

The Raven replied, “I have to.”

Yan ShiSan asked, “Why?”

The Raven replied, “Because I don’t want to miss the dual between you two.”

He continued coldly, “A dual between great masters must take up all their strengths. If I watched from the sides, then surely, I can identify the flaws in your swordplay.”

Yan ShiSan sighed, “Makes sense.”

The Raven continued, “No matter which one of you wins or loses this dual, the one alive at the very end must be me.”

Yan ShiSan said, “Because at that time, the winner must also have exhausted all his strength, and additionally, you have identified the flaw in his swordplay, so if you wanted to kill, that would be the best opportunity.”

The Raven said, “Therefore how could I miss such an opportunity?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “Indeed you can’t.”

He sighed again and said, “Unfortunately, you still made one mistake.”

The Raven asked, “Which one?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “With Third Young Master’s swordplay, there completely is no flaw, not even one!”

* * *

Now they have already begun to drink. The best restaurant, the best wine. They had always been the ones with extravagant styles.

Yan ShiSan said, “After I kill, I must drink wine.”

The Raven replied, “Without killing, I’d still drink wine.”

Yan ShiSan continued, “After I drink wine, I must to find a woman.”

The Raven replied, “Without drinking wine, I’d still go find a woman.”

Yan ShiSan laughed loudly, “Who knew that you are a voluptuary.”

The Raven replied, “You too, you too.”

They had really drunk a lot.

Yan ShiSan said, “Since you’re also a voluptuary, I’ll let you have it today.”

The Raven asked, “Have what?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “Have the bill.”

The Raven said, “No need to let me have it, no need to polite.”

Yan ShiSan said, “This time I must let you have it, I must be polite.”

The Raven replied, “No need, no need.”

Yan ShiSan said, “I have to, I have to.”

When others dine out, they tended to insist on paying the bill, but these two were insisting on not paying the bill.

Yan ShiSan said, “When I have to kill, I never carry any burdens with me, so they won’t get in the way.”

The Raven replied, “Oh?”

Yan ShiSan continued, “Silver is the most burdensome thing.”

The Raven agreed. If a person carried a few hundred taels of silver with them, how could he possibly still display light movements. The Raven suggested, “You can bring paper money.”

Yan ShiSan said, “I hate paper money.”

The Raven asked, “Why?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “You don’t know how many people’s hands have transferred around a piece of paper money. It’s awfully dirty.”

The Raven suggested again, “The large pearls on your sword can be used to exchange for silver.”

Yan ShiSan laughed again. The Raven asked, “This is a joke to you?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “A big joke.”

He suddenly lowered his voice and said, “These pearls are all fake. I sold the real ones a long time ago.”

The Raven was stunned. Yan ShiSan continued, “Therefore today I have to be polite, I have to let you have it.”

The Raven asked, “What if I didn’t come with you?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “Then I’d obviously have other ways. But now since you’re here already, why would I need to think of other ways?”

The Raven also laughed.

Yan ShiSan asked, “What are you laughing at?”

The Raven replied, “I’m laughing at you for finding the wrong person.”

He also lowered his voice and said, “I’m like you as well, today I came here originally prepared to kill.”

Yan ShiSan said, “You also hate paper money?”

The Raven replied, “I hate them very much.”

Yan ShiSan was also stunned.

The Raven continued, “Therefore today I must also be polite, I must let you have it.”

Yan ShiSan was just sighing, when the owner suddenly walked over and said with a smile, “Both gentlemen need not to be polite. Someone downstairs had already paid for the two gentlemen’s bills.”

Who paid the bills? Why would they pay the bills for them? They did not even think about it, nor did they even ask about it. To them, none of these were important.

To be able to eat and drink for free had always been something that made one happy.

When one was very happy, he tended to drink more than usual. But they were not drunk yet.

Just when they were about to feel a bit drunk, two women suddenly came from downstairs. Both were very good-looking women and were dressed very well. They were exactly the kind of women who could captivate men the best.

When one was nearly drunk, it tended to be the time when one was most easily captivated.

Yan ShiSan and The Raven were already captivated, and were just planning on thinking of a way to seduce them.

Who knew, however, that they did not even need to be seduced, and came over by themselves.

“My name is Xiao Hong.”

“My name is Xiao Cui.”

The two of them smiled very sweetly and very charmingly, “We are here to wait on you two gentlemen.”

Yan ShiSan looked at The Raven, and The Raven looked at Yan ShiSan.

If the people who had died under their swords saw what they looked like now, they would surely feel that they had died unjustly.

Now, they did not look at all like world famous, heartless swordsmen.

Xiao Hong said sweetly, “Would the two gentlemen like to drink wine here, or come to our place, either is fine.”

Xiao Cui said, “Either way someone had already paid the bill for you two.”

Although there were many good people and good things in the world, there were not many good things like these.

The Raven asked, “Is this you luck? Or mine?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “Of course it’s mine.”

The Raven asked, “Why?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “They say that when a man was about to die, his luck would always change.”

This was the first day.

The second day was the same, no matter where they went, someone always paid for their bills.

Who was paying the bills? And what for? They still did not even ask nor did they even think about it.

They slept very late and rose very late. Every day, the moment they stepped out of the hotel’s door, there would be a carriage waiting for them outside, as if it was worried that they would be too tired from the night before and were unable to walk. But today, they wanted to get off the carriage and walk.

Today’s weather was very nice. The Raven said, “Is Jade Cloud Mountain far?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “Not too far.”

The Raven said, “If we walked like this, we hope to walk a bit farther, the farther the better.”

Yan ShiSan said, “We could walk slowly.”

In front of them was a large forest, its trees and leaves were still very green. Yan ShiSan said, “How about we go drink for a bit in the forest?”

The Raven asked, “Where’s the wine?”

Yan ShiSan replied, “Relax, if we want to drink, surely someone would bring the wine here.”

It was a sunny day.

They walked along the sunlight illuminated road, the carriage following behind them. On the road in the other direction, however, a carriage drove over and only stopped after it drove into the forest. Out of the carriage stepped three people, two adults and one child.