Editors: Hibi-Chan, Aiiee
Chapter 48 Miracle
The experience of surviving after falling off a cliff was like an absurd dream that even after he returned to the ground, Gu Shenwei was still stuck in it. The castle in front of him suddenly became small, as if he could smash it simply by stepping on it.
The two golden rocs had admitted that this human was the chick’s life saver, so their hostility towards him was absolutely gone. The male bird even pecked out another pair of gray wolf eyes, which it kindly offered to him to have a taste.
The young bird was very imperious, bouncing up like a ball to try to snatch the food in its father’s beak.
Gu Shenwei made a series of complicated gestures to ‘politely refuse’ their goodwill. He felt uneasy in his heart for if the golden roc misunderstood him, he could lose his life. But no matter what, he could never eat the bloody wolf’s eyeballs.
The male bird was very smart, so it lowered its body to feed the wolf’s eyeballs to the young bird.
Gu Shenwei made more gestures indicating that he had fallen from above and though he really liked this magnificent nest, he wanted to go back.
The golden rocs were quite spiritual, and they soon understood the man’s intent. The female bird took off first to look for a path. Then, the male bird used its iron-like claws to gently grasp the man’s shoulder and flew off, following.
The young bird was reluctant to part with Gu Shenwei. It caught up as he was being plucked into the air and pecked hard at his feet.
Though his shoulders and the soles of his feet were in pain, the wonderful feeling of flying in the air washed it away. Gu Shenwei was like a kitten held in the mouth of a cat, which didn’t dare to use any strength. Clouds swept down layer by layer past him, and for several moments, he had an illusion that he was falling instead of rising.
Finally back on the ground, the two golden rocs nodded at him awe-inspiringly and quickly flew away seeming to very much dislike the castle.
Gu Shenwei was absolutely paralysed after experiencing so much. There were no people at the Giant Boulder Cliff. Shangguan Yushi and Shangguan Ru had left, and the items scattered around were still the same as the ones before his fall.
After resting for an hour, he took a deep breath. He could barely stand up, so he limped out by the side of the giant boulder, with his arm braced against the wall, and followed the alley towards the gate of east castle.
As Gu Shenwei gradually walked into the depths of the castle, the world in front of him turned real again.That hatred temporarily suppressed by his miraculous experience reared its head again. He was still the young man who hadn’t successfully avenged the death of his family. Nothing had changed except that Shangguan Yushi must be removed immediately.
Gu Shenwei walked with difficulty; thus, it took a long while before he could return to the stone hut. He threw himself onto the brick bed and immediately lost consciousness. It was too difficult to plan a murder when his body was full of wounds and bruises.
When he opened his eyes, it was pitch black. It was already late at night, yet he hadn’t reported to Xue Niang about the incident that day.
Xue Niang must be very angry, he thought, turned over and fell asleep again.
The next morning, he got up on time. His body was clumsily covered with bandages, clearly not a doctor’s handiwork. He abruptly sat up. The pain was still the same as yesterday and had no signs of going away, but his mind was much clearer, so he could now think normally.
The person who had bound his wounds was obviously Elder Zhang. That silent old man had already left to feed the horses. A big bowl of rice was covered full of meat was put on the edge of the brick bed.
Gu Shenwei forced himself to eat all the food and then went directly to the Giant Boulder Cliff as usual. Since he was still at Golden Roc Castle, he had to perform Servant Huan’s duties.
Outside the door, he glanced in the direction of the stable. The tree of hatred rooted in his heart loosened a bit, but was immediately covered with dark clouds. He covered the tree roots with a thick layer of soil by using the thought of Shangguan Yushi’s still figure.
Nothing had changed at the Giant Boulder Cliff since he left. After cleaning up several items, Gu Shenwei panted. He had not recovered yet, so he had to sit against the wall and rest, which lasted until noon.
He couldn’t—and didn’t want—to see a doctor in the castle. For if the doctor was not optimistic about his recovery, he might be sent to Ji Xin Yuan to await a slow death.
But, sitting here was tantamount to death.
As Gu Shenwei was thinking random thoughts, three talking and laughing youths walked in from outside the giant boulder.
All of the three were the twins’ footmen and their duties were the same as Servant Huan. They usually came late and today was the same.
Seeing Servant Huan sitting motionlessly against the wall immediately wiped the smiles off their faces. They just stood rooted at the narrow entrance, their mouths agape.
“Maya!” one of them yelled, and they all turned and ran away. Because they all tried to squeeze through the entrance at the same time, they fell. 1
Gu Shenwei was confused, then he realized that, in their eyes, Servant Huan was already ‘dead’ after falling off the cliff.
He always thought that those mysterious guardsmen were hiding everywhere at Golden Roc Castle. Therefore, the guardsmen should have found him a long time ago when he walked to the stone hut alive. Then, why had those footmen not heard anything?
Perhaps the message was not sent out. The guardsmen might not have told the news to a group of young servants.
Not long after, the sound of a large group of people running came from outside. Shangguan Ru rushed inside right before Gu Shenwei had gripped the wall to stand up.
Similar to the three footmen previously, she was stunned upon seeing Servant Huan. She stopped, ambiguously standing in a posture of fight or flight. Many stared from behind her, but no one followed inside.
“You, a-are you a human or a ghost?”
Shangguan Ru questioned harshly but couldn’t completely cover up her panicked heart.
“If I were a ghost, I wouldn’t have to bind up these wounds.”
Gu Shenwei smiled, finding it funny.
“He has a shadow!” Little gongzi Shangguan Fei shouted from outside. Then, he squeezed inside to stand behind his sister. He couldn’t stop staring at Servant Huan as if he had just met him for the first time.
“How did you not die?” Shangguan Ru still couldn’t believe it.
“My fall was broken by trees. I lost consciousness for a while and then climbed up by myself; however, you and Yu Gongzi had already left.”
Gu Shenwei hid the part about the golden rocs.
Shangguan Ru’s face gradually eased. Suddenly, she displayed a bright smile and ran to Servant Huan’s side within a few steps. She held his hand and said, “Come with me!”
The two of them ran towards the outside and the youths at the entrance all moved aside. They still couldn’t believe Servant Huan was alive, so they all followed behind from afar.
Running together with Shangguan Ru was a bitter chore, and Gu Shenwei felt that more than one of the wounds had reopened, but he swallowed the pain because he wanted to know what Ninth Gongzi was going to do.
Outside the gate of east castle, Servant Qing, with five other footmen, were anxiously pacing up and down. He wasn’t able to persuade the two gongzis not to see the ‘ghost’, but he didn’t have the courage to follow so he was as anxious as ants on a hot wok.
Shangguan Ru skipped over the threshold of the door and came face to face with the people outside. Servant Qing raised his head suddenly. Although he was more than 30 years old, he still cried Maya, and his legs turned soft, falling into the arms of the footmen behind him.
Shangguan Ru guffawed but didn’t stop. Holding Servant Huan, she continued running. Their destination was neither the school nor the Peng Yue Yuan. After several turns, she stopped at a yard Gu Shenwei had never been to before.
This yard was located within the center of Golden Roc Castle. It was not big and didn’t seem like a place for people to live.
Shangguan Ru pushed the door open, jumped inside, and called loudly, “Yu Gongzi, Yu Gongzi, come out. He didn’t die.”
Gu Shenwei had long wondered why Shangguan Yushi didn’t show up. It turned out she was afraid of vengeful ghosts and had hidden away.
Shangguan Ru called three times before a trembling voice came from the east wing, “Y-you… you’re not lying to me?”
“No, see, he’s alive. He has wounds and a shadow, so he can’t be a ghost.”
The inner door creaked open and Shangguan Yushi stuck her head out. She seemed to be in shock. With her usual arrogant and indifferent expression completely gone, she appeared no different from an average 14 year-old girl in a panic.
“Say, who are you?” She tried to make her voice sound tough, but it sounded nervousness instead.
“Servant Huan. Yu Gongzi, don’t you remember me?”
“How come you didn’t die?”
“When I fell off the cliff yesterday, I landed on a tree. I lost consciousness for a while, then I felt numerous spirits holding me, talking to me. They said, ‘Yu Gongzi was just playing a joke.’ Thus, I should not take it seriously…”
Before Gu Shenwei could finish his story, Shangguan Yushi screamed and retracted her head then closed the door.
Shangguan Ru shook off his hand in dissatisfaction. “It’s good you’re okay, but why scare her?”
“Ninth Gongzi, little servant was just telling the truth and wouldn’t dare scare Yu Gongzi. Maybe I just had some illusions when I fainted.”
Shangguan Ru seemed to neither believe nor disbelieve as she pushed Servant Huan and shouted towards the east wing, “Yu Gongzi, come out now or we’ll come in.”
Shangguan Yushi opened the door and walked out. She had regained most of her calmness and thought that if she must see a ‘ghost’, it was safer to see it under the sunshine than inside the room.
“What do you want?”
Gu Shenwei couldn’t do anything. He just pulled the dagger from his robe, held it with both hands,respectfully presenting it to Shangguan Yushi, and said, “Little Servant is lucky to be alive and wants to serve two gongzis and Yu Gongzi for his lifetime. This is yours.”
Shangguan Yushi slowly reached her hand out then quickly took away the dagger. The short moment of contact with Servant Huan broke the last trace of doubt in her mind, concluding that this was a human and not a ghost.
“Actually I didn’t want… to, if Ninth Gongzi had not said…”
Shangguan Ru jumped forward from Servant Huan’s side, held her cousin’s arm and interrupted her, “Don’t say it, don’t say it! After all, Servant Huan is okay, so let’s be the same as before.”
Gu Shenwei was not actually ”okay”. His body was full of wounds and bruises, and the hatred inside his heart was stronger than ever. If anything was the same as before, it was his determination to kill all the people in the Shangguan family.
But he was a little bit curious about what Shangguan Ru had said that could make Shangguan Yushi so jealous to even want to kill him.
He didn’t ask. He had to be an understanding and good servant on the surface. If the lord forgave and forgot the misdeeds, he had to show his gratitude. As for apology, how could it be possible for a lord to apologize to a servant? It was best not to think of such idea.
Shangguan Ru held her cousin with one hand and her servant with the other and said seriously, “We’re an assassination team, and only the three of us are counted. So, from now on, we should trust, help, love and never betray each other. If anyone betrays the oath, I… I’ll not talk with him or her for a lifetime.”
For this childish oath, Gu Shenwei and Shangguan Yushi took it seriously on the surface and followed to repeat it. When they said ‘love each other’, they both unwittingly revealed the expression of ‘a real man will definitely take revenge’. Fortunately Shangguan Ru was happy and didn’t find out how unreliable her assassination team was.
Oath? Gu Shenwei snorted in his heart. He had sworn many times in the past year, but only the first was true—kill all the people of Shangguan family.
The miracle of Servant Huan surviving a after falling off the cliff triggered no small sensation amongst the youths. Many of them neglected Servant Qing’s angry eyes, and deliberately leaned over to talk to him and take the opportunity to touch him. This way, they could personally confirm that this was really a human body.
But, his encounter with Xue Niang was utterly different.
Xue Niang did not believe in such things as ghosts. She was unsatisfied with Servant Huan for going too far and offending Shangguan Yushi, as if it was all his fault for being assassinated.
As punishment, she struck Servant Huan with her iron-like fingers, adding one more internal injury.
So, when Gu Shenwei came to the Giant Boulder Cliff alone the next morning, he couldn’t do anything. Half asleep, half awake, he could only lay in the sunlight, daydreaming about how to take revenge on Shangguan Yushi without being implicated.
He never expected that it was on this day that he would first experience the pain of Qi deviation, which made him feel a trace of guilt for Servant Yao’s death.
- Translator’s note: ‘Maya’ is an onomatopoeia. It includes the characters Ma (Mum) and ya (ahh). It’s similar to ‘Oh, my God!’. ↩