Chapter 13: Strange Disaster
[บางคำ อาจจะต้องตัด -d, -ed, -s, -es ออกเสียก่อน
At this moment, hearing a faint sound, Tian Qi's hands came out from his back. A short golden staff appeared, and hit Li Xun Huan directly on the leg. Li Xun Huan's fist, even without his dagger, was among the best in the world. Yet because he was grabbed by Long Xiao Yun, he could not do anything.
Lin Shi Yin said, "So you agree?"
Li Xun Huan bit his teeth. "But don't you know that I've always liked to hurt people?"
He got up and said, "Good night."
Lin Shi Yin's said with a trembling voice, "Since you've already left, why come back again? We've been living so peacefully. Why... why come back and cause us trouble?"
Li Xun Huan needed all his energy to keep his mouth closed. Yet his lips still tremble.
Lin Shi Yin's voice suddenly became venomous. "Is it not enough that you've ruined my son? Do you have to ruin her too?"
Her face is just that pale, that beautiful. Her eyes filled with distress, with pain. She has never lost her composure in front of anyone else before.
Could all this be just for Lin Xian Er?
Li Xun Huan did not turn back.
He doesn't have the courage to turn back, to look at her.
He walked quickly down the stairs, then said calmly, "Actually, you didn't really have to plead with me. Because I don't like her one bit!"
Lin Shi Yin watched as he left. Her body suddenly lost all energy as she fell to the floor.
The pond has turned into ice. There's a bridge over the pond.
Li Xun Huan sat on the side of the bridge, staring aimlessly at the pond.
His heart just like this pond.
He could see light coming from Lin Xian Er's room far away. Is Lin Xian Er still waiting for him?
He knows that there's a reason why Lin Xian Er asked him to go. He also knows that if he goes, lots of interesting things will happen. Yet he still just sat there, staring at the candlelight far away.
He started to cough endlessly again.
Suddenly, he saw a shadow from that house. Li Xun Huan immediately gathered himself and flew over.
His steps are quick beyond description. Yet he by the time he got there, the shadow had already disappeared.
Li Xun Huan wondered to himself, "Did I make a mistake?"
He opened the window, then said softly, "Ms. Lin."
There's no response.
Li Xun Huan looked around. He saw wine spilled all over the floor. Then on the table, he saw a single plum flower!
The Plum Flower Bandit!
Could Lin Xian Er be in the hands of the Plum Flower Bandit?
Li Xun Huan picked up the wine cup, sweat came out of his palms.
At this instant, he heard a faint sound, and the candlelight immediately went out. Then came countless hidden weapons from all directions.
Yet of all the hidden weapons in the world, which can come close to Little Li's Dagger!
Li Xun Huan twisted his body, his hands already caught 18 weapons. The rest bounced off his foot.
He then heard a loud shout from outside.
"Plum Flower Bandit. You can't escape. Come out and die!"
"No matter how good you are, we can still make you die a terrible death!"
"I won't lie to you. Seventh Master Tian from Luo Yang is here. Plus Mr. Gong Sun, the Venerable Zhao, and Fourth Master Long.
Li Xun Huan shook his head, then said silently, "Tian Qi* really did came."
*[Tian Qi is Seventh Master Tian. "Qi" means seven.]
Then he heard someone said, "Since you're here, why don't you come out?"
Li Xun Huan coughed lightly, then spoke with a thick voice, "Since you're all here, why don't you come in?"
People outside start to talk among themselves, "Looks like this guy wants to lure us into the room."
Then one booming voice rose above the chatter. "The Plum Flower Bandit can only sneak around in the dark. Why would he have the guts to meet us?" Everyone else also immediately echoed this, trying to get the person inside to come out.
Then they heard, "Right, the Plum Flower Bandit does tend to sneak around, but what does that have to do with me?"
That booming voice then said, "If you're not the Plum Flower Bandit, then who are you?"
Another voice said, "Mr. Gong Sun, why bother to ask him? The venerable Zhao could not have been mistaken. This person must be the Plum Flower Bandit."
Li Xun Huan suddenly burst out laughing. "Zhao Zheng Yi, I knew this was all your doing." In the middle of the laugh, he shot out the window and into the crowd. Everyone took a step backward.
Then Long Xiao4 Yun said loudly, "Everyone stop. This is my brother Li Xun Huan!"
Li Xun Huan looked immediately at Zhao Zheng Yi. He said with a smile, "Mr. Zhao really has great eyesight. If my hands and feet weren't so agile, I'm afraid I'd already be the Plum Flower Bandit's dead body double."
Zhao Zheng Yi's face is pure green. He said coldly, "Someone hid here in the middle of the night. If I don't think that person is the Plum Flower Bandit, then who could it be? How could I know that you're suddenly no longer ill, then secretly came here."
Li Xun Huan said calmly, "I don't have to secretly come here. I can go anywhere I want. Besides, How could the venerable Zhao know that the lady did not invite me here?"
Zhao Zheng Yi laughed. "I don't know what your relationship is with Ms. Lin. But everyone knows that Ms. Lin could not possibly come here tonight."
Zhao Zheng Yi said, "In order to avoid the Plum Flower Bandit, she moved out earlier today."
Li Xun Huan said, "If that's the case, you can at least make sure you've got the right person before attacking."
Zhao Zheng Yi said, "In order to beat people like the Plum Flower Bandit, one must take the initiative. Otherwise, we run the risk of him escaping."
All his words are logical and righteous. They sound irrefutable.
Li Xun Huan laughed loudly. "Very nice ‘taking the initiative'. Looks like if I died today in your hands, I can only blame it on bad luck, and not you."
Long Xiao4 Yun coughed twice, then forced a smile. "It's easy for one to make a mistake in the middle of the night. Besides..."
Zhao Zheng Yi then said coldly, "Besides, maybe I didn't make a mistake."
Li Xun Huan said, "Oh? So you're saying that I am the Plum Flower Bandit?"
Zhao Zheng Yi laughed. "Maybe, maybe not. Everyone only knows that the Plum Flower Bandit's lightness kung fu is very good. His speed amazing. But whether his name is Zhang, or Li, no one knows."
Li Xun Huan said, "You're right. My lightness kung fu is certainly quite nice. My speed also decent. The time the Plum Flower Bandit reappeared is about the same time I came back. If I'm not the Plum Flower Bandit, then something must be wrong."
He chuckled. Then stared at Zhao Zheng Yi. "Yet if you're so certain that I'm the Plum Flower Bandit, then why don't you capture me now?"
Zhao Zheng Yi said, "It doesn't matter when I capture you. Besides, I have Tian Qi and Muo Yun here. Do you really think you can escape?"
Long Xiao4 Yun's face turned pale. He said, "Come on. We're just joking around, right? Let's not be serious. I can promise everyone that he's not the Plum Flower Bandit."
Zhao Zheng Yi said, "No one can joke about something like this. You two haven't seen each other in such a long time. How could you be so sure?"
Long Xiao4 Yun said, "But... but I know what kind of person he is."
One person suddenly said, "You might know a person, but you don't know his heart. Fourth Master Long surely must've heard of this saying."
This person is thin as a stick. His face shriveled, looking like ill old man. Yet his voice is crispy clear. This is the famous Gong Sun Muo Yun."
Another person appeared behind him. This person looking like a rich young master. He chuckled and said, "That's right. I, Tian Qi, has been a long time friend of Li Xun Huan. Yet when something like this happens, I can only set aside our friendship."
Li Xun Huan said, "Although I have many friends. Yet I don't think I've ever had a friend in such a high place as Tian Qi."
Tian Qi's face changed. His eyes screamed murder.
Everyone in the martial world knows that when he wants to kill, he'll immediately attack. Yet for some reason, he still just stood there.
Only to see Gong Sun Muo Yun, Zhao Zheng Yi, and Tian Qi all surrounding Li Xun Huan. All three look very serious.
Yet they could only stand there, staring at the dagger in Li Xun Huan's hand.
Li Xun Huan didn't even bother to look at them. He simply said, "I know all three are just itching to kill me now. By killing me, not only do you become incredibly rich and have a gorgeous woman, your name will remain famous for years to come."
Zhao Zheng Yi said, "Money and women are not important. We're only killing your for justice in the martial world."
Li Xun Huan laughed loudly. "How righteous! How honorable! You really do live up to your nickname, venerable Zhao."
He touched the tip of his dagger lightly, then said, "So why don't you come capture me?"
Zhao Zheng Yi stared intently at the dagger while remain quiet.
Li Xun Huan continued, "Oh. I know. Tian Qi's staff is without equal in the world. Mr. Zhao must be waiting for must be waiting for Tian Qi to go first. So how come Mr. Tian Qi is just standing there?"
Both of Tian Qi's hands remained behind him, as if he didn't hear a single word.
Li Xun Huan said, "Is Mr. Tian Qi waiting for Mr. Gong Sun to go first? That's a good idea. Mr. Gong Sun's 14 Cloud Fist has thousands of variations. Obviously, he should go first."
Gong Sun Muo Yun also seemed to have turned deaf, not making a move.
Li Xun Huan laughed loudly into the air and said, "This is strange. All three wants to kill me. Yet none would make a move. I wonder why?"
Those three people really are patient. No matter how Li Xun Huan ridicule them, they still just stood there motionless.
Obviously, all three wanted to kill Li Xun Huan immediately. Yet Little Li's Flying Dagger never misses. As long as he has the dagger, who would dare move?"
Long Xiao4 Yun suddenly smiled. "Brother, can't you see they're just kidding? Come, let's go drink some wine."
He walked up to Li Xun Huan with a big smile. Then pulled on his wrist.
Li Xun Huan instantly became shocked, said with a trembled voice, "Big brother you..."
He wanted to escape from Long Xiao4 Yun's grab, but it's too late.
At this moment, only to hear a faint sound, Tian Qi's hands came out from his back, a short golden staff appeared, hitting Li Xun Huan directly on the leg.
Li Xun Huan's fist, even without his dagger, is among the best in the world. Yet because he was grabbed by Long Xiao Yun, he could not do anything.
After he dropped to his knees, Gong Sun Muo Yun immediately sealed seven pressure points on his back. Zhao Zheng Yi then followed with a kick, and Li Xun Huan fell back a few feet.
Long Xiao4 Yun jumped up and yelled, "How could you do this to him? Release him."
Zhao Zheng Yi said coldly, "We can't risk such a thing."
Tian Qi said, "I'm sorry, Mr. Long."
Gong Sun Muo Yun had already blocked Long Xiao4 Yun's path. Long Xiao4 Yun tried to attack, but Tian Qi's staff immediately paralyzed his legs.
Before he can do anything else, Zhao Zheng Yi sealed his pressure point.
As Long Xiao4 Yun dropped to the floor, he said. "Brother Zhao. How could you..."
Zhao Zheng Yi said, "Although we're brothers, justice in the martial world comes before friendship. Hopefully you'll understand this, so you won't get dragged down by rotten people like him."
Long Xiao4 Yun said, "But he can't be the Plum Flower Bandit!"
Gong Sun Muo Yun said, "Fourth Master, you have a good home and a good reputation. People like him aren't worth your sympathy."
Long Xiao4 Yun said, "If you release him, I'll hold myself accountable for everything."
Zhao Zheng Yi said, "What about your wife then? Your son? You would see them get dragged down with you?"
Long Xiao4 Yun's whole body shivered.
Li Xun Huan's dagger is still in his hand, but he'll never have a chance to use it!
Would this true man, real hero, meet such a cruel ending like this?
Long Xiao4 Yun could not help but shed tears. He said, "Brother, it's all because of me. I hurt you. Your big brother failed you."
The hours before dawn are usually the darkest. Even all the light in the hall could mask the infinite darkness.
A group of people gathered outside the hall, chattering amongst themselves.
"Tian Qi really is awesome. Did you see how fast his staff was? Even if Fourth Master Long weren't there, I bet Li Xun Huan still could not block it."
"Besides, he had Mr. Zhao and Mr. Gong Sun by him."
"You're right. No wonder people say that the Venerable Zhao's feet are worth twenty thousand taels of gold. His kick was stunning."
"Yet what about Mr. Gong Sun's fist? If he didn't attack so quickly, I bet Li Xun Huan would not falter so quickly."
"Mr. Tian, Mr. Zhao, Mr. Gong Sun. Humph, Li Xun Huan really is unlucky to have met these three."
"Although that's all true, but if it weren't for Fourth Master Long..."
"What about Fourth Master Long? Could he be more of a friend to Li Xun Huan?"
"Fourth Master Long really is a true friend. Li Xun Huan is incredibly lucky to have such a brother!"
Long Xiao4 Yun sat on a red wood chair in the hall. The last words seemed to have stuck in him like needles. His face full of sweat.
Only to see Li Xun Huan lying there on the floor, coughing endlessly again.
Long Xiao4 Yun shed a tear. "Brother. It's all my fault. It's your bad luck that you'd meet a friend like me. I... I ruined your life."
Li Xun Huan did all he can to stop his cough. He forced a smile and said, "Big brother. I just want you to know one thing. If I were to live my life again, I'd still be your best friend."
Long Xiao Yun started to cry. "But... if I weren't holding your hand, how could you... you..."
Li Xun Huan said sincerely, "I know whatever you do, it's for my benefit. I can only thank you."
Long Xiao4 Yun said, "Why don't you just tell them that you're not the Plum Flower Bandit? Why do you.."
Li Xun Huan smiled. "Life and death are trivial stuffs. I've already lived a full life. Why do I care so much about dying? Why bother to bow down in front of these filthy, annoying people."
Tian Qi was listening in on the whole conversation. He looked at them and clapped. "Very nice. Very nice!"
Gong Sun Muo Yun laughed coldly. "He knows that we would not let him go no matter what, so he can only ridicule us, making himself feel better before death."
Li Xun Huan said calmly, "You're right. At this point, I can only ask for death. Yet now that I no longer have my dagger, why do you still not kill me?"
Gong Sun Muo Yun's wrinkled face suddenly turned red.
Zhao Zheng Yi said loudly, "If we were to kill you now, words might spread around the martial world that we only wanted to kill you for our selfish needs. We need to fairly execute you!"
Li Xun Huan sighed. "Zhao Zheng Yi, I really do deeply admire you. Although your heart's absolutely disgusting, all your words are bright and righteous. And you can say them with a straight face."
Tian Qi said with a laugh. "Mr. Li. You do have guts. If you really want to die so quickly, I have a plan."
Li Xun Huan said, "I originally wanted to say something to you too. But I didn't want to stain my mouth."
Tian Qi went on as if Li Xun Huan didn't say anything. "If you want to die a little quicker, just write down that you're guilty. Then we can provide you with a merciful death."
Li Xun Huan didn't even have to think. "Fine. I say it. You write it."
Long Xiao4 Yun hurriedly said, "Brother. You can do this!"
Li Xun Huan just ignored him. He kept on going. "My crimes are too numerous to speak. I pretend to be righteous when my heart's evil. I scheme for power, break other people's friendship, sneak attack on others, use devious methods when fighting, I have no integrity and did tons of horrendous things. Yet I still feel as if I'm a true gentleman!"
Only to hear a loud sound, as Zhao Zheng Yi slapped him hard on the face!
Yet Li Xun Huan just smiled. "No matter. I'll just pretend that I got bitten by a crazy dog."
Zhao Zheng Yi said angrily, "You bastard. Listen well. Even if I can't kill you yet, I can still make you wish that you were dead!"
Li Xun Huan still just laughed. "If I were afraid of you little filthy fake gentleman, I wouldn't be a true man. Just use whatever torturing method you want!"
Zhao Zheng Yi said. "Good!"
Long Xiao4 Yun simply shivered on his seat. He said, "Brother. I'm sorry. You might be a hero, but I'm a coward. I..."
Li Xun Huan said, "This isn't your fault, big brother. If I had a son and a wife, I'd do the same thing."
At this time Zhao Zheng Yi had already grabbed hold of him, pulling his muscles hard. The pain is excruciating for anyone to endure, yet Li Xun Huan still just smiled.
At this time, someone said outside, "Ms. Lin, where did you come from? And who's this friend of yours?"
Only to see Lin Xian Er's clothing messed up, with parts torn, walking into the hall.
By her side is a youngster. Even on such a freezing day, he's just wearing a thin piece of clothing. Yet his shoulders are still straight. As if nothing in this world can make him bend!
Yet he's carrying a dead body.
Why is Ah Fei here?
Li Xun Huan's heart pounded, not knowing whether to be happy or shocked. Yet he suddenly turned away, not wanting Ah Fei to see him like this.
He doesn't want Ah Fei to do anything stupid for him.
Yet Ah Fei still saw him.
His cold face suddenly lightened up. Then marched towards Li Xun Huan. Zhao Zheng Yi did not block him, for he knows how skillful this youngster is.
But Gong Sun Muo Yun doesn't know this. He immediately blocked Ah Fei's path and said, "Who the hell are you? What do you want to do?"
Ah Fei said, "To teach you a lesson!"
When he heard this, Gong Sun Muo Yun attacked.
Lin Xian Er only looked shockingly at Li Xun Huan, not caring about anyone else. As for Long Xiao4 Yun, he doesn't really want to do anything anymore.
Yet oddly enough, Ah Fei didn't even bother to dodge.
Only to hear a loud noise as Gong Sun Muo Yun's fist landed on Ah Fei's chest. Ah Fei didn't move an inch, yet Gong Sun Muo Yun was in such pain he bent down on his knees.
Ah Fei didn't even bother to look at him, instead walking up to Li Xun Huan and asked, "Is he your friend?"
Li Xun Huan just smiled. "Do you think I have a friend like him?"
At this time, Gong Sun Muo Yun attacked again. Suddenly, Ah Fei turned around, and with another loud thud, Gong Sun Muo Yun landed several feet away.
The crowd couldn't believe what they're seeing. No one would believe that the famous Cloud Fist would look like crap in front of this youngster.
Only Tian Qi laughed loudly. "Friend you are quite fast. The youngsters really is overtaking us old folks."
He bowed and said. "My name is Tian Qi. What's your name. Maybe we can be friends."
Ah Fei said, "I don't have a name. Nor do I care to have a friend like you."
Other people's expressions changed, yet Tian Qi kept on smiling. "Unfortunately, you're very bad at making friends."
Ah Fei said, "Really?"
Tian Qi pointed at Li Xun Huan and said, "Is he your friend?"
Tian Qi asked, "Do you know who he is?"
Tian Qi chuckled, "Do you also know that he is the Plum Flower Bandit?"
Ah Fei raised his eyebrows. "Plum Flower Bandit?"
Tian Qi said, "This really is hard to believe. But one has to accept the truth."
Ah Fei stared at him, his stare penetrating his heart.
Ah Fei said coldly, "He's definitely is not the Plum Flower Bandit."
Ah Fei suddenly dropped the dead person on his shoulders. Then said, "Because this is the real Plum Flower Bandit!"
The crowd could not help but starting to gather around the corpse.
This corpse is thin and dry. The knife wounds on his face made it hard to tell who he is.
Tian Qi laughed again. "You're saying that this is the real Plum Flower Bandit?"
Ah Fei said, "Yes."
Tian Qi said, "You really are a youngster. Do you really think everyone's so gullible? Do you think we'll believe you just by bringing some corpse and say it's the Plum Flower Bandit?"
Ah Fei said, "I never lie. And I never get tricked."
Tian Qi said, "In that case, how can you prove it?"
Ah Fei said, "Just look at his mouth!"
Tian Qi laughed again. "Why should I look at his mouth. Can he talk or something?"
Everyone else also laughed along. Even if they didn't think it was very funny, they still laughed along because Tian Qi did.
Lin Xian Er suddenly came and said, "I know he's not lying. This person really is the Plum Flower Bandit."
Tian Qi said, "Really? Did the corpse tell you?"
Lin Xian Er said, "That's right. He told me himself."
She didn't let anyone interrupt her before continuing. "When Qin Zhong died, I can see he died from a very powerful hidden weapon. It's not too big a deal that he couldn't dodge this weapon. Yet there's something fishy if even a master like Wu Wen Tian couldn't dodge this hidden weapon. Now I know why."
Tian Qi's eyes twitched. "Oh? So why?"
Lin Xian Er said, "Yes. The secret is in his mouth."
She suddenly used a knife to open the corpse's mouth. There's a little barrow inside.
Lin Xian Er said, "It's only because the weapons came out when he was talking, that no one would guard against such an attack!"
Tian Qi said, "If he has this barrel in his mouth, how can he talk?"
Lin Xian Er said, "This is the secret within the secret. He doesn't need his mouth to talk. Because he can do so with his stomach. His mouth is for killing people!"
While what she said sound ludicrous, knowledgeable people like Tian Qi knows that such an ability does exist. Supposedly, it came from Persia, and was mainly used as circus tricks. Normally it sounds very weird. Yet if used by a true martial arts expert, the sound can obviously be much more realistic.
Lin Xian Er said, "Before Mr. Tian and others fight, where do you look at?"
Tian Qi said, "Obviously at the opponent's body."
Lin Xian Er asked, "What part of the body?"
Tian Qi responded, "Shoulders and hands."
Lin Xian Er smiled. "See. That's my point. When experts fight, they never look at the opponent's mouth. Only when dogs fight do they worry about the opponent's mouth. Since people aren't like dogs, they never bite.
Everyone else chuckled. When a beauty such as Lin Xian Er say something like this, how could one not laugh along?
Yet Lin Xian Er immediately looked sullen, then said, "Yet the Plum Flower Bandit just happen to use his mouth as his weapon. The better the fighter, the easier it is to get tricked. Because a high level martial arts expert would never notice the opponent's mouth.
Tian Qi asked, "So how did you find out about this secret?"
Lin Xian Er said, "I only found out after he used the hidden weapons."
Tian Qi chuckled. "So is our little friend a dog? He only likes to stare at other people's mouths?"