Da Tang Shuang Long Zhuan

Chapter 8 – Trouble in the Casino

Book 3 Chapter 8 – Trouble in the Casino

Ren Meimei left the gambling table to meet them. Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling found out that her clothes was tightly wrapped around her body, emphasizing her full body and exquisite curves; immediately their hearts were beating faster.

This charming beauty moved her full-of-youthfulness-and-vitality body to three people’s presence. After sizing up Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling again, she turned to Xiang Yushan and said with a laugh, “These two Gongzi seem to be strangers; are they your friends?”

With a bitter laugh Xiang Yushan replied, “Mei Gu [charming aunt], you’d better not provoke them.”

Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling did not expect Xiang Yushan to be that forthcoming toward her; they got a shock.

Ren Meimei did not take offense at all; she walked around to the two boys’ back and laughed coquettishly, “Xiang San Shao [third young master] must have spoken a lot of malicious words behind my, Ren Meimei’s back, but two gentlemen must by all means not believe him. If he is a good man, then I am the Guanyin Dashi [Goddess of Mercy] who saves common people.”

Xiang Yushan cleared his throat and said, “Mei Gu, you must not damage our friendship. Don’t forget that Peng Liang Hui and our Baling Bang have always been living together in harmony …”

Ren Meimei circled around to face the two boys again; covering her mouth, she laughed tenderly, “Did you see that? Xiang San Shaoye frequently uses Baling Bang to bully me, a weak woman; what kind of hero is that? Wow! Two little brothers[1] are really handsome, no wonder San Shaoye took a fancy to you. What are your names?”

The two boys had a feeling that Baling Bang sounder familiar, but momentarily they did not remember who mentioned this name to them.

Xiang Yushan was showing his displeasure openly, “Mei Gu, did you lose some money? Let me compensate you then, but don’t babble nonsense in here.”

Evidently Ren Meimei was not afraid of him, she cast Xiang Yushan a flirtatious glance and said, “Am I, Ren Meimei, someone who doesn’t have any gambling nature? You are the one who babbled nonsense.”

Suddenly her hand shot forward to grab Xiang Yushan.

Xiang Yushan let out a cold snort and raised his right hand to brush away her artery.

Ren Meimei laughed and said, “I don’t want to fight!” Yet although her mouth said so, her jade palm flipped over and swept down to block Xiang Yushan’s attacking right hand, while her crooked finger counterattacked by flicking Xiang Yushan’s artery.

Xiang Yushan pulled his hand back and turned it into a chop, with his curved palm swatted her flicking finger.

These several moves happened within an area about one chi wide; it was both swift and displaying deep offensive and defensive techniques. Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling watched the exchange wide-eyed; they were very interested in this kind of intricate fighting technique.

Ren Meimei laughed tenderly, “I haven’t seen you for several months, turns out you were hiding to train your martial art skill; no wonder your arrogance soaring to the sky.” While she was speaking, her jade hand made subtle swinging a few times, as if she was going to attack, but not exactly attacking, as if she was blocking, but not exactly blocking.

Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling intuitively understood what she was doing, they were able to fully grasp her move and strategy. While obviously Xiang Yushan failed to understand Ren Meimei’s bizarre technique; unexpectedly he took a step backward. The two boys knew the worst was yet to come, Ren Meimei already laughed tenderly, while fast as lightning she thrust her finger onto the back of Xiang Yushan’s palm.

While Xiang Yushan was jolted by this attack, Ren Meimei already grabbed his sleeve and pulled it hard, so that he was carried away and stumbled to the side. All the while she did not forget to flash her enchanting smile toward the two boys and unhurriedly said, “I’ll have a few words with Yushan, and then I’ll come back to accompany you.”

They saw the two people went toward the corner of the hall and mumbled several secret whispers with each other. Xu Ziling’s countenance suddenly changed. “I remember now,” he said in hoarse voice, “Didn’t Beautiful Shifu mention that Baling Bang is the Emperor’s young son’s running dog? They are specializing in trafficking human beings!”

Kou Zhong sucked in a mouthful of cold air, “So what good can we say that he took a fancy on us? Quick! We must slip away immediately.”

“Hold on!” Xu Ziling pulled him back, “They are back. We are going to change according to the situation. Ay! I really did not see this ‘mountain trader’ [play on words on Yushan, ‘jade mountain’] is also a martial art expert. On that street we randomly picked someone to ask, why did we pick a martial art expert and a bad egg [i.e. [email protected]] in one?”

Meanwhile Ren Meimei and Xiang Yushan walked back hand-in-hand toward them. Looking at their friendly spirit, the two boys knew that the two people had reached a private agreement.

Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling felt their scalp turned numb, knowing that once again the two of them had become a commodity.

From a distance Ren Meimei already let out her unrestraint laughter, “Turns out the two little brothers [see footnote 1] came here this time is to have a taste of women’s gentle and soft feeling. Let me, Jiejie [older sister] take care of this matter.”

This time Xiang Yushan’s tone of speech was greatly changed, “It’s rare that Mei Gu shows such respect for you. I will have a VIP suite opened up for you, everybody can drink, have a chat and laugh, and enjoy the romance together.”

Kou Zhong giggled and said, “Why worry about it? I suddenly have an urge to play a hand or two, I am good at Paijiu [paigow, dominoes] the most.”

Xiang Yushan laughed, “So be it,” he said, “You ought to go to the VIP suite right away. Mei Gu also loves Paijiu the most. You guys want to accompany her playing, nothing could be better than that.”

This time Kou Zhong was at a loss for words.

Still maintaining his elegant and unconventional demeanor, Xu Ziling shrugged his shoulders and said to Kou Zhong, “If you want to gamble, you should seek my approval first. I don’t know anything about Paijiu, but I do want to stroll around the casino to broaden my horizon.”

Ren Meimei moved her tender body to the front. Pulling the crook of two boys’ arms she gave Xiang Yushan a meaningful glance and said with a smile, “Let me take care of them.”

Xiang Yushan laughed to give his approval and immediately turned around and left.

Ren Meimei intimately pulled the two boys along toward the inner lobby. She said with enchanting smile, “You must not listen to that fellow Xiang Yushan talking any idle gossip about other people.”

Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling were about to speak, but when they looked at her, they saw that when she was walking, the twin peaks on her chest were continuously bobbing up and down following her gait; it was extremely captivating, so that they could not restrain their hearts from thumping wildly and jumping madly, and they forgot what they were about to say.

All of a sudden they did not think that she was so scary anymore; especially her figure and her expression, none did not carry a special charm that was capable of moving other people’s heart, that unconsciously gave birth to a feeling that even if they had to die for her, they would gladly do it.

The fact was that Ren Meimei was extremely proud in her heart.

She had ‘read’ countless men, and in just one glance she could tell that these two boys were still virgin. To a person who was adept at ‘collect and mend’ technique like her, the two boys were no more than exquisite serum or sweet nectar that would bring great benefits to her vitality; hence the reason she wanted to wrestle them, by hook or by crook, from Xiang Yushan’s hands.

This moment she was exploiting her body, unleashing her superior charm, to evoke the two boys’ primal sensual desire.

Xu Ziling’s mental power was slightly better than Kou Zhong’s; only after a slight daze, his mind cleared up considerably. Seeing Kou Zhong involuntarily panting and licking his lips, and was showing a leering look on his face, while intentionally used his shoulder to bump her silky breasts, he knew something was not right; his brains moved fast, and he blurted out, “Ol’ Die is here!”

Kou Zhong was startled and came to his senses. “Where is he?” he asked in panic.

Ren Meimei was puzzled, “Didn’t his old dad pass away already?” she asked.

Inwardly, Xu Ziling breathed a sigh of relief; he cooked up some nonsense, “It’s just a joke we invented; it means a ghost is coming, which means nobody is!”

Kou Zhong summoned all the willpower he could muster, he no longer dared to look at this woman’s chest.

Ren Meimei was angry; she twisted her appealing body, immediately the two boys were aware of her well-developed body, burning desire touched their heart and strayed their mind.

But since they were already wary of her, they firmly suppressed their surging lust, while groaning inwardly, wondering how they could get out of this predicament.

If her ‘flesh-temptation’ continued, and they were unable to resist, who knows what kind of dire consequences would ensue. Xiang Yushan’s earlier warning was still ringing in their ears.

Kou Zhong happened to see the gambling table on their left only had five guests around it, which leave seven or eight seats vacant. A sudden inspiration struck his mind, “Let’s play a game or two!” he said. Wriggling himself free from Ren Meimei’s clutch, he sat on an empty seat.

Ren Meimei did not seem to mind at all, still smiling coyly, she sat on his left, while Xu Ziling took the empty seat on Kou Zhong’s other side.

As soon as this beautiful woman sat down, the eyes of the other five guests were immediately drawn to her chest. When Ren Meimei swept her pretty eyes around, the five men were immediately overcome with lust; so much so that one of them was drooling.

The dealer was a woman around twenty years old, quite pretty; but compared to Ren Meimei, she immediately lost her splendor, and no longer enjoyed the limelight.

This table happened to be a Paijiu table. Although Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling had never really gambled before, growing up in the marketplace they had seen enough people gambling, naturally they were also well-versed in the way of doing it.

Ren Meimei’s interest suddenly arose; she said to the dealer, “Let me be the banker!”

The dealer naturally knew who she was; after repeatedly agreed, she withdrew to the side.

Ren Meimei took the banker position and laughed coquettishly, “Why haven’t you put down your bet?”

Everybody immediately put down their bet; they were all very excited.

But Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling were groaning in their heart. To have their hard-earned money put down in gambling was naturally painful and heart-breaking.

Ren Meimei’s gaze fell on them. “Don’t you want to play a hand or two?” she urged, “Quickly put down your bet!”

Kou Zhong giggled and said, “We need to sit tight first and observe how you, the new dealer, play your trick before we lay our bet; alright?”

Ren Meimei only smiled tenderly without saying anything. With skillful finesse she shuffled the tiles, and only after she piled it up stack by stack did she throw the dice and deal the tiles.

It was not clear whether she employed some kind of trick, but she lost three rounds in a row. The gamblers’ cheers and applause immediately attracted the attention of the other gamblers on several tables nearby that they flocked over and took all the seats.

Ren Meimei smiled and said to Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling, “Jiejie suffers an adverse wind; if you want to win, quickly lay your bet.”

From the back, someone yelled, “If you don’t bet, give up your seat!”

Ren Meimei gave the man a hard stare; she shouted, “Who dares to tell them to step aside, I’ll wring his hands.”

The man obviously knew that she was formidable, immediately he kept his mouth shut out of fear.

Kou Zhong had no choice; he fished a tael of silver and tossed it out as his bet.

Ren Meimei burst into a tender laugh and cast a sidelong glance toward the two boys. She was about to deal the tiles under the burning gaze of more than a dozen pairs of eyes, when suddenly a soft and tender voice came from behind Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling’s back, “Hold on!” And then an incomparably delicate and beautiful jade hand reached out from between the two boys, and put a piece of gold ingot, weighed at least ten taels, next to Kou Zhong’s pitiful one tael of silver.

This action sent the gamblers into an uproar, because this ingot of gold worth at least several hundred taels of silver, so it was indeed rare that someone would place that much wager in one bet.

Ren Meimei’s eyes shot a cold flash as she looked at the beautiful woman that squeezed through several men that they were pushed to the east and opened to the west.

When Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling looked up in astonishment, a pair of delicate hands already pressed on their shoulders. As they looked closer, they could not help crying out to their Niang, because the woman was none other than the ‘Serpent and Scorpion Beauty’ Shen Luoyan.

Shen Luoyan was looking down at the two boys, her face showed a sweet smile as she said, “I told you, two little kids, not to play around randomly. Look! People nearly cheated you your wealth and trick you into having sex.”

A deep, cold killing aura flitted across Ren Meimei’s beautiful eyes. “Who’s coming?” she asked coldly.

Shen Luoyan simply met her stare for half a day before smiling and said, “Who’s the banker? Since Third Master[2] wants to be the banker, you ought to follow bankers’ rule. If you cannot meet the stake, you ought to just admit defeat and leave the field.”

Realizing that the opponent already know who she was, yet still struck a hard stance, Ren Meimei trembled inwardly, yet on her face she still maintained that foxy attitude brimming with the thoughts of romance. “Such a tiny gold ingot, our Peng Liang Hui can still deal with it,” she said with a smile.

Among the guests crowding around them, there were more than a dozen who, when they heard the name Peng Liang Society, were afraid of getting involved. These people immediately slipped out quietly, not even daring to fetch the money they put down as a wager back.

The crowd around the gambling table was thinning out; two seats immediately became vacant.

By this time Kou Zhong already calmed down; he patted Shen Luoyan’s jade hand that was pressed threateningly on his shoulder. “Hi Beautiful!” he said, “There is an empty seat beside me, why do you tire yourself by standing up?”

Shen Luoyan smiled slightly; she stooped down to give each of the two boys a peck on the cheek. Unexpectedly she really sat down on the chair next to Kou Zhong.

Noticing her confidence, as if she was certain she would get them, plus her affectionate kiss with her fragrant, delicate, soft and tender cherry lips, which melted their souls, Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling really did not know whether they should be happy or scared.

Ren Meimei still maintained her silence as she dealt the tiles.

[1] Little brothers: here she did not use the term Xiao Xiongdi, which is rather polite, but Xiao Ge’er, basically means ‘the boys’.

[2] Third Master - here, the word ‘master’ is ‘dang jia’, someone who is in charge/who call the shots. I was tempted to use the word ‘skipper’ or ‘captain’, but it sounds so western.

Chapter 8, Part 2

Anh, Critical, Ysabel, Jaya, HPC, you are welcome. 9Dragons, thanks, since nobody knows anything, I think it safe to assume that whoever that was did not translate the next chapter. Sky, sadly, no girl stayed long enough ... at least up to this point of the story.

Suddenly several people appeared by the gambling table; they were all casino people, and Xiang Yushan was one of them. Next to him was a fat man wearing embroidered gown; he had broad face but small eyes, yet the pupil of his eyes flickered brightly, so that people know that he was not a character they would want to mess with. Both he and Xiang Yushan were sizing Shen Luoyan up and down with their gleaming eyes.

Shen Luoyan acted as if she did not even notice people were staring at her; she whispered in Kou Zhong’s ear, “This time I am saving you once. Whatever big kindness, big enmity between us, we’ll call it quits.”

Finished dealing the tiles, Ren Meimei cast a coquettish glance toward the fat man and said, “Xiang Ye [master] has come in person! Do you want to play a round?”

The man she called Master Xiang laughed aloud before plopping himself on an empty seat like a meaty pillar on an upside down golden mountain. He sighed and said, “It’s rare that San Dangjia [see footnote] is willing to be the banker, Wagang Fort’s Pretty Junshi Miss Shen is willing to play; how could I, Xiang Gui, refuse to play along?”

Ren Meimei’s beautiful body trembled; she looked at Shen Luoyan and coldly said, “Turns out it is the Pretty Junshi Shen Luoyan; no wonder you talk big. But winning or losing, I, Ren Meimei, will accompany you play.”

Shen Luoyan laughed gracefully, her beautiful eyes darted back and forth between Xiang Gui and Ren Meimei. She said nonchalantly, “The two of you spoke too highly of me. I, Shen Luoyan, only run errands for Duke Mi; how could I talk big or talk small? This time I came here on Duke Mi’s behalf only to recover two wandering prodigal children. I am asking a lot of forgiveness from the two of you, so that when Duke Mi attacks Pengcheng in the future and we meet again, nobody will talk a bad talk against each other.”

As the remaining dozen or so guests heard the name Wagang Army, they did not dare to tarry; they all left that not even one remained. Even the hundreds of guests in the other halls also left as soon as they heard what was going on.

But there was one person remained. This man wore a tall hat on his head, his countenance stiff like a dead person. He looked straight into Ren Meimei’s eyes and spoke in cold manner, “Why haven’t you throw the dice?”

The strangest thing was that his man was taller than average person, plus he was standing proudly with his hands behind his back, yet nobody even noticed that he was standing there until all gamblers scattered away and he opened his mouth to talk.

By this time, only three groups of people remained around the gambling table: Ren Meimei who was acting as the banker; Kou Zhong, Xu Ziling and Shen Luoyan; and Xiang Gui plus his son Xiang Yushan and two of their most competent men, who were standing behind him. All three groups immediately turned around with changed countenance.

Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling were the first who were spooked out of their mind; they shouted with cracked voice, “Ol’ Die is here!”

The newcomer was indeed Du Fuwei. Besides, only he had the ability to appear out of empty air like shadowless rain.

He showed a surprisingly warm smile as he said tenderly, “These two sons of mine are really capable, even your Ol’ Die was nearly deceived by you. But now that I see you are not inside the hungry wolf’s belly, I am so happy that I am willing to forget your naughtiness.”

Shen Luoyan always did her homework in researching the other militia leaders; she was the first to recognize who he was. “Du Fuwei of River Huai!” she gasped.

Ren Meimei, Xiang Gui and the others were shaken; they were even more confused as to the relation between this old dad Du Fuwei and the two boys.

Du Fuwei still had his eyes fixed on Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling; without even casting any glance toward Shen Luoyan, he asked, “Zhai Rang has not been harmed by Li Mi yet?”

Shen Luoyan’s beautiful body trembled slightly. “Du Zongguan is joking,” she replied in low voice.

Pompously Du Fuwei sat down; his gaze moved to Ren Meimei’s face as he spoke indifferently, “Ol’ Du has not seen ‘Demon Claw’ Nie Jing for several years, is he still not happy if he does not have any woman every night?”

After knowing that the opponent was Du Fuwei, Ren Meimei immediately turned from fierce tiger to tame kitten. She replied awkwardly, “Da Dangjia [first master] is still like that.”

Seeing that as soon as Du Fuwei made his appearance all the men and horses of the opposite party immediately became docile, Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling were both happy and groaning inwardly, yet they were helpless to do anything. Whether in terms of martial art or battle of wits, they were far inferior to this old fox. Previously, it was only because of various circumstances, coupled with Du Fuwei grossly underestimated them and thus he was careless, that they had their chance. Right now the situation differed greatly; it would not be that easy for Du Fuwei to be fooled again.

Du Fuwei changed direction to Xiang Gui, “I heard you are one of the four martial art masters under the ‘smoking pipe’ Lu Kangshou, with specific responsibility to find handsome men and beautiful women for Lu Kangshou; did you fancy my two inferior sons?”

Xiang Gui jumped in fright; he hastily replied, “Du Zongguan misunderstood; your esteemed sons are merely our casino’s honored guests. We have nothing to do with each other.”

Du Fuwei nodded. “That would be best!” he said.

Everybody knew how vicious and merciless he was, how easy it was to kill; who would dare to speak up?

That day, when Yun Yuzhen, in her capacity as the leader of a Clan, plus she had Dugu Ce’s backing behind her, confronted Du Fuwei, in the end she had to submit to him [orig. hang her hands down and called herself ‘your servant’]. Now, unless Li Mi personally came, nobody even had the qualifications to stand on equal footing with him.

Du Fuwei’s eyes returned to Ren Meimei’s pretty face. “Why haven’t you thrown the dice?’ he prompted gently.

How could Ren Meimei dare to refuse? She threw the three dice in her hand onto the table.

At first the three dice were spinning rapidly, but when they were starting to slow down, they stopped abruptly, as if being controlled by some kind of invisible power. All dice had one dot facing up.

Everybody noted that Du Fuwei had his left hand pressed against the table. Needless to say, it was he who sent his internal strength via the table to control the number of dots on the dice. Merely this feat, everybody present asked themselves if they had the ability to imitate. Even Shen Luoyan who was hesitating whether she should make her move also immediately dispelled that thought.

She came this time, not only she brought about a dozen martial art expert under her command to come along, she also included Zu Junyan, who was of the same position as herself, so it was not because she did not have the strength to do an all-out battle.

Du Fuwei laughed and said, “So Ol’ Du ought to pick the first tile.” He had just finished speaking, a stack of tiles slid across the table as if pulled by invisible hand and stopped in front of him, while at the same time flipped open. To everybody’s surprise, one pair was ‘Heaven’ [all sixes], the other was ‘Supreme’ [one and two, and two and four], a winning combination.

Everybody watching felt their scalp turned numb, not only because of his internal energy that has reached perfection, but even more shocking was because he was able to see through the trick that Ren Meimei did.

Kou Zhong sighed and said, “Too bad Ol’ Die did not place a bet. If you had put down a dozen his mother’s ingots of gold, and share your winning with child, we would have struck it rich.”

Du Fuwei laughed and said, “I have already put down my bet. My wager is the two of you, unworthy sons. Come! We’ll talk when we get home.”

Xu Ziling laughed aloud and said, “Please forgive your children for being unfilial. Since we have stepped out of the house, we will never come back. At most we will use the ‘snapping heart and artery’ that Niang taught us. Once we are dead, then we will go home to have you, Ol’ Die beat and scold us.”

As Shen Luoyan listened to their ‘dad’ and ‘mom’, she was even more confused; yet she knew perfectly well that they were not Du Fuwei’s sons. Nonetheless, she admired their guts in standing up against Du Fuwei’s valor.

Who would have thought that Du Fuwei did not think that they were being disobedient at all? He simply sighed and said, “Let’s not talk about Die will never let you break your heart and artery, I will never believe your nonsense even more. But since the day you left, Die has been really concerned about you. Not only I cannot bear to scold you, I will even recognize you as my own sons, to bear my Du family name.”

How could the two boys believe him? But since he had seen through their ruse, they could not fight him, and they could not slip away either; momentarily they did not know what they ought to do, they were at their wit’s end.

Right this moment, a peal of tender laughter came from the direction of the main lobby. “Du Zongguan, since your naughty sons are not obedient, why don’t you hand them over to be disciplined by us?”

Everybody was greatly astounded; who in their right mind, after knowing that they were dealing with Du Fuwei, still dare to pick lice on the tiger’s head?

Without even turning his head, Du Fuwei said, “Who’s coming? State your identity and origin, let’s see if you have enough qualifications to manage Ol’ Du’s inferior sons.”

Two women, one tall one short, appeared about three zhang away from Du Fuwei’s back. One of them said, “Protector of the law Shan Xiu and Shan Yudie of Dong Ming Pai of Ryukyu are here to see Du Zongguan.”

Du Fuwei was greatly astonished, “Dong Ming Pai has always been specializing in weapons sale, and has never directly intervened the dispute internal to the Central Plains. I wonder what is the reason you came to care about my two children.”

Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling also ‘you looked at me, I looked at you’. They were both delighted and anxious at the same time. Delighted because they were finally found by the Law Protector Fairy [orig. xianzi – immortals] of Dong Ming Sect; anxious because they were afraid the women would not be a match for this old dad, who ought to be considered the most terrifying man in the world.

Whether in terms of facial feature, skin and physique, these two women were totally unlike the image of fairies in average people’s imagination; however, although they were not standing by the foot of a beautiful hill like how the fairies are usually depicted, these women were definitely anything but ordinary.

Shan Xiu was lanky; so skinny that she looked like a layer of skin wrapped around bones, yet her height was comparable to Du Fuwei. Her hair was tied into a bun on top of her head, her eyes looked spirited, yet they also looked dull, her robe looked too big for her body. It would be strange indeed if people came across her in the middle of the night at a desolate area outside a town and did not think that she was a wandering ghost.

But she gave people the impression that she was clean and tidy, so clean and dry that she was immune to any plague that might harm her.

Chapter 8, Part 3

Yan, HPC, Jaya, Ysabel, Anh, Szfong, Drak, you are welcome. Sky, tada ... another beauty enters the scene ... Yan, that was a very nice thing to say. I am touched, I truly am ... And I am not a hypocrite, I could use extra money, especially now; but ... One: I am not conceited, I know my own limitation, you cannot compare me with Ren. Two: I haven't visited Ren's website, so I don't know what's involved in setting up something like that. Problem is, I have a full time job and a family; I am not sure I will have time to manage such website. Three: even if I setup one, I cannot promise faster translation. Plus my work is usually on traditional wuxia, not the new, more popular xianxia, so I don't think it will generate much ... But I am serious, I do appreciate your thought. Thank you.

Here is the end of Chapter 8.

Shan Yudie, on the other hand, was a plump butterfly [yu die means jade butterfly]. She was a full head shorter than Shan Xiu, and in term of age, she appeared more than ten years younger than Shan Xiu; her face round like a full moon, giving people the impression that she was warm and affable. It was hard to imagine that she was a leader-level martial art expert of Dong Ming Sect.

But the most noticeable was the flexible steel rope, made of steel pieces linked together, that were hanging loosely on their waists. It was a singular weapon that was very hard to make well. Dong Ming Sect’s fame in weapon manufacturing shook the heavens. These two unique flexible steel ropes were naturally not commonplace items.

It was the very first time for everybody in the hall to see the two martial art masters protector of the law, so they all showed the weird expression ‘oh, so this is what they look like’ on their faces.

The tall and withered Shan Xiu spoke dryly, “These two boys have shown kindness to our humble Sect by giving us warning, so that our humble Sect escaped the disaster of Yuwen Huaji’s sneak attack. If Du Zongguan is willing to be magnanimous, our humble Sect will definitely pay you back.”

This speech was very polite; she was giving Du Fuwei enough face.

Yet without even thinking Du Fuwei sighed and said, “Please forgive the Ol’ Du for not complying to your request. Two fairies, please go back!”

Ren Meimei, Xiang Gui, and the others were greatly confounded. It should be noted that Dong Ming Sect wielded tremendous power as the world leading weapon supplier. With their support, Du Fuwei’s contention for hegemony over the world would enjoy tremendous boost. However, for the sake of two nameless boys [orig. their names not encountered in the classics] he flatly refused Dong Ming Law-protector Fairy’s proposal. This has puzzled them greatly even after they pondered over it hundreds of time in their mind.

At the same time, Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling seemed to hear Madame Dong Ming’s familiar voice in their ears, giving directions.

Shan Xiu also grimly heaved a sigh and said, “We don’t have any choice but to make our move to see your real skill.”

Right this moment, Du Fuwei already made his move. His target was Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling.

After his experience last time, how could he be careless again?

While the solid wood gambling table shattered into small pieces like sand and stones, he darted toward the two boys.

Suddenly thousands of sword tips shot out from Shen Luoyan’s hand, she was attacking Du Fuwei.

Among the people present, she was the only one who had clear understanding of Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling’s real background.

When she failed to subdue the two boys before, she was determined to eliminate them. Simply because she wanted to get rid of the contingency factor, namely the ‘Duke Yang Treasure Trove’.

Speaking about the current situation, among the various militias, Wagang Army held the biggest power. But they let if any other party succeeded in obtaining the ‘Duke Yang Treasure Trove’, perhaps the current balance of power would experience huge changes. Therefore, she would rather have the two boys killed and the secret would be like a stone thrown into the sea and sank without leaving any trace.

This moment, other than Dong Ming Sect’s strong backing, she also relied on Zu Junyan and other martial experts under her command; how could she let Du Fuwei get hold of the two boys?

In the meantime, Ren Meimei and others were retreating outside the hall.

Du Fuwei already anticipated that Shen Luoyan would try to stop him. His left sleeve rose up; he swept the perimeter of Shen Luoyan’s sword tips.

Shen Luoyan’s sword tips’ shadow disappeared, leaving just one sword. Fast as lightning the sword floated outward, which was blocked and pushed back by Du Fuwei’s Qiankun [universe] Sleeve.

Meanwhile Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling, together with their chairs, tipped backward and fell onto the floor, and the two of them quickly rolled toward the door on the other side of the room; their movement was so fast than even Du Fuwei was taken aback.

Shan Xiu and Shan Yudie, two great Law-Protector Fairies of Dong Ming Sect, had already flown over. Their hands reached out to their waists, with a flick of their wrist the two flexible steel whips, which were made of eighteen sections of steel pieces as thick as a finger linked together, with total reaching distance about a zhang, shot toward the back of Du Fuwei’s head and his back.

As if he had eyes behind his head, Du Fuwei flicked his two sleeves backward, sweeping the tip of the whips.

‘Ding! Ding!’ Shaken by the amazing strength of his sleeves, Shan Xiu and Shan Yudie were jolted backward.

Seemingly without any effort Du Fuwei has consecutively forced three martial art masters to retreat. Accelerating his body, in an instant he flew toward the two boys who were still rolling on the floor.

While he was thinking that very soon Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling would fall into his evil clutch, suddenly, ‘Boom!’ There was a loud explosion, followed by a big hole appeared on the wall. As if the sand and stones had eyes, they were shooting toward Du Fuwei.

For the first time that evening Du Fuwei showed some concerns on his face. Failed to grab the two boys, his arms swirled around, creating myriad of sleeve shadows, blocking the sand and stones and sending them shooting back toward the hole.

At the same time he pursed his lips to send out a sharp whistle to summon his escorts, the ten martial art experts who were surrounding that place to render their assistance.

‘Boom!’ Unexpectedly another explosion on the tiled roof opened up another big hole. A flicker of the sword tip appeared. Like a rainbow the sword shot from above toward the tianling [heaven spirit] acupoint on the top of Du Fuwei’s head.

A biting cold sword aura completely enveloped Du Fuwei, blocking his entire advance and retreat paths, the power was extremely overbearing. Even with Du Fuwei’s ability, his only way out was to abandon his intention to jump through the hole where Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling escaped, and focusing all his strength to deal with this terrifying sword.

‘Boom!’ Sleeves and sword collided, emitting a muffled-thunder like explosion as the qi and the sword force struck each other.

Like a puff of white cloud something swept across the air about a zhang away, before slowly descending into the hall below. It was a stunningly beautiful woman, with the sword in her hand pointing to Du Fuwei’s direction.

With jade face and vermillion lips, her tender and beautiful body seemed to radiate youthful vigor. Her shiny, jet-black beautiful hair was in stark contrast to her snow-white skin, so that her jade bone and ice-sculpture muscle became even more prominent; in short, she was extremely alluring.

It’s just that her hair was tied into a bun on top of her head like a man, wrapped in a white warrior band; but her countenance, disposition and complexion shamed even Shen Luoyan.

Du Fuwei actually thought that the one attacking him must be Madame Dong Ming, so when he looked closer, he was taken aback. “Attacking Miss, who are you?” he asked in astonishment.

The sound of fighting also came from the middle hall. Evidently his men were also being intercepted by the enemy. Plus Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling has already gone out of the hole and disappeared without any trace. And Shen Luoyan and the two Law-Protector Fairies were standing about three zhang away watching him.

The beautiful woman cast an indifferent look toward Du Fuwei. Soon afterwards her beautiful eyebrows frown slightly; quite naturally her face showed a displeased expression that would make other people not dare to offend her. She replied in gentle voice, “Wanbei [junior/younger generation] Shan Wanjing; much obliged to experience Du Zongguan’s ultimate skill.”

A deep, cold murderous aura flashed through Du Fuwei’s eyes as he nodded and said, “Turns out it’s the Dong Ming Princess; it’s not surprising that ypu have such a skill.”

And then he turned his gaze toward the hole from where Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling escaped. “I have long heard that the fame of Madame Dong Ming’s Shui Yun Xiu Fa [water and cloud sleeve technique] is resounding far and wide all over the world,” he spoke in deep voice, “Since you have arrived, why not come down to the battle field to let the Ol’ Du experiencing it once. Otherwise the Ol’ Du will go all-out and offend your thousand-catty gold [i.e. daughter].”

Just by these few sentences, Shan Wanjing was extremely proud. Among the present day Jianghu characters, how many have enough qualifications to make Du Fuwei goes all-out?

Madame Dong Ming’s gentle and beautiful, deep and magnetic voice was heard from the hole, “Du Zongguan is angry, but why? My Dong Ming Pai has always been attaching most importance to gratitude and grudges. Gratitude must be repaid, grudges must be avenged. For you to cultivate enmity with us, it will simply bring more harm than good toward Du Zongguan’s great undertaking. Besides, Zongguan has made quite a bit of unwise moves tonight, your acute spirit has been broken; won’t it be better to transform a thousand spears into jade silk, and we all could end this matter amiably?”

Du Fuwei shivered inwardly; in all honesty, he did feel stupid and was greatly discouraged. Not to mention he had revealed his whereabouts, whatever happened he must not stay too long in this place, where the imperial forces still held much power; yet he must not reveal this predicament. After pondering for half a day, he threw his head backward and laughed heartily, “Very well! I, Du Fuwei, am also a man who is capable to distinguish gratitude and grudges. This matter will be repaid. Madame, please!”

His shadow flashed, he was already in the middle hall, where a series of blood-curling screech was heard, but died down very soon afterwards.

While Shen Luoyan’s countenance was changing, the three Dong Ming Sect women leaped up through the roof, and Zu Junyan rushed in. He said with a sigh, “He killed five of our men before running away.”

Shen Luoyan has already predicted this result; her expression stayed the same as she said in low voice, “Notify Duke Mi immediately, if we can intercept and kill him before he reaches River Huai, we will gain at least a quarter of the world [reminder: tian xia – China].

Her beautiful eyes turned toward the hole on the wall, to the rear courtyard outside, where the moon and the stars shone their light. Her mind wandered to the two boys, Kou Zhong and Xu Ziling, who evoked a faint feeling of compassion and regret like a mist shrouding her thought.

Although she had made up her mind to kill the two boys, it was only for the sake of the present situation; the fact was that a favorable impression had started to grow in her heart. Subtle, but it was there.

These two boys were indeed very special and wonderful people.

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