Happy New Year and New Decade Everyone????????!! I wish you all great happiness and health! May all your worries and troubles be left behind in 2019 and all your wishes and dreams be achieved in 2020????.
Is it him?
He’s not dead!
In that instant, Ji Feng Li’s heart shook like never before. Even if the skies and earth upturnt, his calm would not be forsaken. Even if the deep seas transformed into fields of mulberry (idiom for time bringing great change to the world), he would remain collected. Even if the entire world fell into ruins he would not be so stunned.
Momentarily, his mind was in a daze, unable to conjure up any thoughts as though he had been struck by a bolt of lightning.
In that moment, it was like the stars had shifted; like the butterfly dream of Zhuang Zhou(t/n idiom about how one is uncertain if what one sees is an illusion or reality), he too was gripped with uncertainty. (link to zhuang zhou butterfly dream)
Hidden beneath his sleeves, his fingers trembled uncontrollably. Clenching and unclenching, he gripped his thighs but they remained shaking. Leaning against the table, the table in unison shook unsteadily.
His heart, like a river that had long since frozen in the midst of winter, in that moment, was struck by a waterfall in the height of summer, it’s surface collapsing, its water swelling into waves of emotions.
Was this a dream?
“Na Lan Xue, quickly pinch me,” Ji Feng Li, who would remain collected even in the face of a collapsing mountain, said to Na Lan Xue in a shaky voice.
But Na Lan Xue did not hear Ji Feng Li at all. His gaze remained fixed ahead, filled with awe as he held a cup of tea in his hand.
Consequently, Ji Feng Li could only do it himself, pinching himself on the wrist.
Once more. Still painful!
Seemingly, it was no dream.
His mind momentarily blanked but very soon his heart was overwhelmed with different emotions, from shock to doubts then amazement and even joy all at once. He couldn’t think of anything, couldn’t even say anything. In his mind, two words were repeated, over and over, “Bao Er…. Bao Er.. Bao Er…”
With each second, the voice swelled like a flood, engulfing his heart.
All at once, the surroundings seemed to have faded and all he could see was her alone. His heart filled with indescribable joy, like the encounter between Fu Xi(legendary mythological chinese emperor; Nuwa’s husband) and Nu Wa(creator of humans in chinese mythology) tens of thousands of years ago. (link to Nuwa and FuXi)
Bao Er was still alive and the only thing Ji Feng Li wanted to do in that moment was to rush forward and pull him into his embrace and kiss him, shower him with affection and hold him tightly in his arms…..
And he was prepared to do so. But just as he got up, Na Lan Xue, who was standing beside him, suddenly roused from his daze and pressed him to his seat. He slowly asked, “Prince, where do you want to go?” He then leaned closer to his ear and whispered, “Don’t forget where you are. Moreover, why did he suddenly become a woman? Who is she? What is her motive?”
Bao Er, a woman!
Ji Feng Li finally came back to his senses.
That’s right, he… she, who is she exactly?
He tried to suppress the emotions swelling in his heart and carefully observed her. His face was hidden behind the intricately sculpted golden mask, exposing only the elegant curve of his jaw along with a pair of dark, phoenix eyes intense with emotions, cold and chilling yet burning with fire.
At the center of the palace hall, Commander Bao, who once adorned the military armor to race upon the frontiers; Bao gong gong, who once adorned the crimson attire of a eunuch; was now in a thin white silk dress, hair combed into a cloud bun affixed with a phoenix hairpin, with a pair of vermillion lips, slender waist and towering chest. Indeed she was a woman.
“What, has Bao gong gong taken a fancy to this Chancellor? Couldn’t resist and swam all the way here? Though this Chancellor doesn’t have a broken-sleeve…… , Bao gong gong is not only beautiful, but has gone to such great lengths to charm this Chancellor. If this Chancellor refuses, then this Chancellor would not be recognizing your good intentions. Since that is the case, this Chancellor shall reluctantly comply.”
She then turned around and flashed him a graceful smile. While embracing his clothes and white trousers in her hand, she laughingly said with squinted eyes, “Lord Chancellor, you should take your time with your bath. This servant shall leave first and shall temporarily borrow these clothes! Furthermore, Lord Chancellor ah, this servant doesn’t have a broken sleeve but even if I did, I still wouldn’t take notice of you. Your figure isn’t enticing enough!”
“There really are people with broken sleeves in this world! It seems it won’t be easy for you to willingly follow me.”
“I know that the Crown Prince won’t amount to much. Though between us there is affection, it’s not so deep that I would devotedly accompany him to the Yellow Springs(Hell). Since the Left Chancellor has shown interest in me now, a broken-sleeve such as myself won’t mind, with Left Chancellor…”
“What… What? Acquire for what?”
“I want to eat meat!”
“I like her!” She coldly exclaimed as the snow descended upon the military camp.
“Why?” He asked unwillingly.
She looked up at him, her smile frosty as she said, “I’ve told you before, I’m not a broken-sleeve!”
“This old man came to snatch the bride!”
“Ji Feng Li, I hope you will let Si’Er leave with me!” She coldly stated.
“Why?” Ji Feng Li lowered his head and questioned as he walked forward.
She coldly sneered, “Ji Feng Li, I had already said that I like her…”
He couldn’t help but kiss her but she pushed him away, coldly exclaiming, “Get out! Don’t disgust me!”
“Today this Chancellor realized Bao gong gong actually eats both male and female!”
She responded with a smile, ““Lord Chancellor just found out today? You’re slower than expected!”
Raising her head, she smiled with composure and responded, “That’s right, this gong gong is acquainted with the unmarried wife of the Left Chancellor. As for this pendant, I indeed have seen her wear it.”
“Ji Feng Li, you also have such a day! It’s truly refreshing!”
She violently pulled Ji Feng Li and he immediately fell off the bed.
“Bao Er, I’m leaving. If there truly is an afterlife, do you know what I want to do most?” he lowered his head and asked.
“What?” Hua Zhu Yu asked as she looked up at him. Unknowingly, tears welled at the corners of her eyes, slowly trickling down.
“I would appeal to the King of Hell, let me be reborn as a woman in the next life. Bao’Er, I don’t want to be a man with you anymore.”
The moments of them together flashed across his mind, one by one, as he slowly fell for a man, gradually becoming a broken-sleeve.
Yet that man turned out to be a woman. So he wasn’t a broken sleeve, simply because she was a woman. It was a woman he was attracted to. But she had kept it hidden from him for so long, watching on the sidelines as he struggled on the path of a broken-sleeve. But that was not enough, in the end, she even gifted him with a final blow, taking his life.
He used to think she hated him, rejected him simply because she wasn’t a broken sleeve. Now knowing that she was a woman, he began to wonder perhaps she had never liked him at all, even just a little. To him, she was the person he loved most, but perhaps to her, he was the person she most hated.
The joy he felt upon seeing her slowly submersed. Bao’Er, regardless of your true identity, regardless of your motive, regardless of whether you love me or not, as long as you’re still alive, that’s good enough. And as long as I can see you once more, is already good enough.
The dance gradually came to an end and Hua Zhu Yu looked up with a charming smile. She swept her gaze across the audience and saw their astonished faces. Obviously, among these people there were some who didn’t know Yuan Bao but even if they did, they wouldn’t dare believe it.
Huangfu Wu Shuang’s deep gaze was fixed on her, his eyes dark as night, flickering with a spark of fury. That’s right, how could he not be angry? He thought she was his bride yet the person beside him turned out to be Dan Hong. And now she appeared before him with the status of a female dancer, how could he not be angry?
translations at peachblossomgrove . com
Sitting beside Huangfu Wu Shuang, Xiao Yin looked at her with his purple eyes, deep as a thousand feet abyss. His eyes had the ability to bewitch one’s soul and it seemed as though she could sink in them at any moment.
She smiled slightly and paid her respects to Huangfu Wu Shuang. “Your Majesty, this servant still has a song to dedicate to Your Majesty.”
The expression upon Huangfu Wu Shuang’s face was heavy but he continued smiling. “Alright.”
Hua Zhu Yu received the pipa from the hands of a servant standing on the sidelines. With a smile, she lifted her sleeve and her fingers glided swiftly across the strings. Instantly, the pipa sounded, soft and light, like the drizzle of rain, lingering in the air.
Moments after, the tune rose with urgency and fierceness, like the shower of a rainstorm, slowly converging, gathering at a central point.
The sound of the pipa swelled suddenly, like the stomping of armored horses and the heavy collision of swords amidst the claps of thunder.
Everyone sitting in the hall felt a sense of unease, their heartbeats quickening involuntarily with the urge to promptly run.
In that instant, Hua Zhu Yu’s hands flashed across the pipa and the four strings instantly broke, halting the sound abruptly. Like arrows, the four strings were positioned in her hands, attacking towards Huangfu Wu Shuang.
With this one strike, he must die.
First, Hua Zhu Yu had employed her internal force into her fingers as she struck the strings, trapping the audience in a muddled state with her music before breaking the strings to use them as weapons.
Like four long arrows, the four strings shot out into four different directions, attackings towards Huangfu Wu Shuang’s critical points, completely sealing all areas of retreat.
The delicate strings glided past everyone’s eyes like lighting, glistening under the candlelight, aiming directly at Huangfu Wu Shuang at an unimaginable speed.
At this moment, the entire hall was filled with a fierce murderous air emanating from her body.
No one had imagined the pipa could be used as an assasination weapon. Nor did anyone expect a delicate female dancer to give off such a strong killing intent.
This attack was quick, precise and ruthless.
“You majesty be careful!” the Imperial Guards standing by wanted to rush over to rescue but they were too late.
The corners of Huangfu Wu Shuang’s lips curved in a cold smile. His frosty eyes watched as the strings attacked.
Suddenly, the wine cup within his hand was thrown forward. The jade cup intercepted one string, shattering into pieces. The second, third, and fourth string were all closing in, one aimed between his brows, one at his left chest and one straight at his throat.
He quickly tilted his head, dodging the string aiming for his head and stretched out his fingers to block the one aimed at his throat. However, he couldn’t avoid the one aimed for his chest in time, he could only swiftly shift aside to avoid damage to his vital organ as the string pierced into his chest silently.
This year marks the fourth year which I will be translating this novel. It’s crazy to think that it’s been that long. I’d like to give a big shout out to all the readers, commentors, and donors for keeping me company on this translating journey! In 2019 I’ve translated 34 chapters, totaling 113,000 words. This novel has 169 chapters so that means there’s only about 32 chapters left which means I’ll probably be finished with the translation of this novel this year!!
I’m super excited and have even given thought to which novel I’ll be picking up next. I’ve been think about either Bu Bu Jing Xin (Step by Startling Step) or My Gentle Tyrant. However, I haven’t finished reading either of these novels so I’m not sure if it’s a good idea to translate something I haven’t finished reading. However, these two are really good novels that were unfortunately dropped. I’ve seen all the dramas/movie adaptations of Bu Bu Jing Xin so I’m sure it’s a worthwhile read, its just very slow paced and contains lots of characters with longggg names which makes it difficult to translate. I’m assuming that’s why no one has picked it up yet even though it’s a super popular story. My Gentle Tyrant is also very good but its filled with so much angst. I’m currently re-reading the english translations by Cathartic City. She has translated it so beautifully so it’s quite a bit of pressure if I do decide to pick this up. Please comment below which novel you’d be more interested in reading! Of course this is definitely not set in stone, I’m just throwing things out there. I definitely will be finishing up World of Hidden Phoenix first before I decide to start anything new.