Happy Heroes 32 PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 11 July 2008 20:05

Chapter 31 – Commander Jin

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Sour Plum Soup. Mei RuNan.

A brilliance flashed in front of Guo DaLu’s eyes. “It is you,” he exclaimed. “What are you doing here?”

Smiling, Mei RuNan said, “I was just going to ask you. Why have you two come here?”

Yan Qi interrupted, “We are waiting for you.”

Mei Ru Nan: “How did you know I would be coming?”

Yan Qi: “I know how to deduce.”


Mei RuNan smiled prettily as she gave a light punch to Yan Qi. “You,” she chortled. “I cannot understand a single word of anything you say because you are a…”

Yan Qi quickly reached over and covered her mouth with his hand. His face seemed to have turned a slight hue of pink as, in an anxious tone, he warned, “If you dare utter a bunch of rubbish, just you wait and see if I will tear your lips off.”

Guo DaLu could only stare in bewilderment. Yan Qi had rejected Sour Plum Soup’s marriage proposal; Sour Plum Soup should have despised him. Why, then, when these two met now, were they being so affectionate towards each other?

Mei RuNan’s eyes were twinkling. She looked at him, then looked at Yan Qi before covering her mouth in a little giggle. “Fine. I will not say anything, but I am not going to listen to you either. Xiao Guo’s [Little Guo] words are more reliable than yours.” She then immediately followed up by saying, “Xiao Guo, let me ask you: what are you two doing here?”

Guo DaLu gave a couple of dry coughs and put on a forced smile. “We are not here to do anything. We are merely… merely out for a stroll. Strolling over here cannot be considered illegal, right?”

Mei RuNan laughed, “I was already frequently coming here to play when I was still in my mother’s belly.”

Yan Qi glanced over at Guo DaLu. Guo DaLu appeared to want to say something, but he held it back.

Mei RuNan: “So you are scheming some sort of plan? Did I guess correctly?”

Yan Qi: “No.”

Mei RuNan gave a regretful sigh. “Well then, there is no need for me to tell you my plan.”

This time, Guo DaLu could not help jumping in again and asking, “What sort of plan?”

Mei RuNan replied in a nonchalant tone, “Since you guys are not here for that reason, then even if I say it out, it will be for nothing.”

Guo DaLu: “What if we are here for that reason?”

Mei RuNan: “Then maybe I can think of a plan to help you out.”

Guo DaLu: “Then I will tell you. You have guessed completely correctly. You are brilliant; practically like a living Zhuge Liang.”

A “pfft” escaped from Mei RuNan and she chuckled in reply, “I had known all along that you are more truthful than he is.”

Guo DaLu: “But what about your plan? It is not an option for you to not tell us now.”

Mei RuNan crossed her hands behind her back and started to pace slowly back and forth with measured steps, as if she really thought that she was Zhuge Liang.

Yan Qi’s voice was icy. “I had known all along that your words would not be dependable.”

“You can do whatever you want to try and provoke me,” Mei RuNan told him with a smile, “but it will not work in the least bit.”

Guo DaLu: “What is it you want before you are willing to tell us?”

Yan Qi: “A condition.”

Guo DaLu: “What sort of condition?”

Mei RuNan batted her eyes at him. “ ‘Profits that come into your hand must be divided in half upon meeting.’ You should have heard this saying before.”

Guo DaLu laughed, “So you actually want to be ‘the bad who picks on the bad.’ ”

Mei RuNan: “My heart is not that mean. I do not really want half of everything. A 30/70 split is good enough.”

Guo DaLu: “What if your plan does not work?”

Mei RuNan: “Whether it works or not, you will be able to test it out right on the spot.”

Guo DaLu told her with a chuckle, “In my opinion, you should change professions and sell dog skin medicinal paste instead [a saying used to describe someone that deceives people as a way of making a living].”

Mei RuNan: “Are you two going to sell this dog skin medicinal paste with me?”

Guo DaLu: “It would be pointless if we don’t.”

Mei RuNan smiled prettily. “And if I don’t sell it, that would be pointless too.”



A high wall.

Mei RuNan led Yan Qi and Guo DaLu into a dark alleyway in the back. This alley was much narrower than the lane out front. At the end of it was a narrow black door.

Yan Qi: “This is the back door of the Jin household?”

Mei RuNan nodded. “Behind this wall is the rear courtyard of the house. Once spring arrives, Jin Dashu [Uncle Jin] will move his quarters from the warm pavilion in the front to this rear courtyard.”

Guo DaLu was listening.

Mei RuNan: “I am going to jump over the wall into the house, and you have to follow behind and chase me.”

Guo DaLu: “And then?”

Mei RuNan: “And then I will go find Uncle Jin, tell him that you are harassing me, and ask him to deal with you for me.”

Guo DaLu: “And then?”

Mei RuNan: “Uncle Jin has always doted on me. When he sees you chasing me, he will definitely use his ‘pellets in rapid succession’ on you.”

Guo DaLu: “And then?”

Mei RuNan: “There is no ‘and then’ after that. As long as you are able to catch his ‘pellets in rapid succession,’ you will immediately become a little wealthy man.”

Guo DaLu: “And what if I am not able to catch them?”

Mei RuNan: “Then you may become a dead person.”

Guo DaLu: “Dead person?”

Mei RuNan nodded. “If he knows that you are harassing me, he will certainly not be courteous to you when he attacks.”

Guo DaLu: “And you?”

Mei RuNan: “Me? Of course I can only watch from the side.”

Guo DaLu: “If I get rich, you will come find me to split the loot. If I die, you at least ought to buy a coffin for me.”

“Uncle Jin will supply a coffin for you,” she answered.

Guo DaLu: “And so, no matter what happens to me, there will be no loss to you.”

Mei RuNan chortled, “Of course there won’t; otherwise, why would I offer up ideas to you?”

Sighing, Guo DaLu grumbled under his breath, “Great idea. It is so amazing how you could think of such a wonderful idea.”

Mei RuNan: “Women will never enter into business arrangements in which there will be a loss to them.”

“Women. Ai… women,” Guo DaLu sighed again.

Mei RuNan: “So are you going to do it or not?”

With a forced smile, Guo DaLu replied, “If I don’t do it, then it would just be senselessly not doing it.”

“If you die, you cannot blame me,” Mei RuNan warned.

Guo DaLu countered, “If I really do die, I would not be able to thank you fast enough. Why would I blame you?”

Puzzled, Mei RuNan repeated, “Thank me?”

Guo DaLu: “Dead people do not have to face their creditors nor listen to the long-winded babbling of women. Isn’t that much better than being alive and exhausted from hardships?”

Mei RuNan: “Are you for real?”

Guo DaLu: “No.”



Guo DaLu never felt that living was a hardship. He had lived a life filled with happiness. Regardless of the situation, he was always able to find something meaningful to do, and regardless of what he did, he would do it enthusiastically. As a result, he was always very happy. Should it really come to a time when he wanted to die, then that must mean that, even if the world’s population had not completely perished yet, there were certainly not many people left.

 

A one zhang [1 zhang = 10 feet], four feet wall would already be considered rather tall for a normal household, but this wall was at least two zhang , eight feet tall.

Mei RuNan lifted her head and assessed it. “You are certain that you can get up there?”

Guo DaLu: “So-so.”

Mei RuNan: “What is ‘so-so’ supposed to mean?”

Guo DaLu: “It means that I can probably get up there because, although I am not certain I can, I have the courage to try.”

Mei RuNan: “That can be found in the secrets of lightness kungfu too.”

Guo DaLu was not boasting. Regardless of what he did, his biggest secret lay in one word: courage.

Mei RuNan looked at him and sighed, “I just hope that you do not crack open your head.”

Guo DaLu: “Even if I crack open my head, I will still go up.”

“Alright.” Mei RuNan gave a pretty smile and instructed, “I will go up first for a look. Once I give you the signal, you have to hurry up and chase after me.”

Guo DaLu: “Do you have confidence that you can get up there?”

“No.” She let out a little giggle. “I neither have confidence nor courage, but I have a method.”

Guo DaLu: “What sort of method?”

Mei RuNan: “This method.” All of a sudden, she jumped up onto Guo DaLu’s shoulders, then from his shoulders jumped onto the wall.

With a groan, Guo DaLu muttered, “Why is it that women always use methods that take advantage of men?”

In a casual tone, Yan Qi answered, “Because most men are just too stupid.”

Guo DaLu: “Are you not a man?”

“I am a man, but I’m not stupid,” Yan Qi chuckled.

Mei RuNan was signalling to him from up above. Guo DaLu positioned himself, ready to leap up into the air, but then he stopped again and turned around to look at Yan Qi. “What are you waiting for?” Yan Qi asked.

Guo DaLu: “Once I leave, I may really turn into a dead person this time. So…”

Yan Qi: “So what?”

Guo DaLu: “So, you should tell me that secret of yours now.”

Yan Qi: “Nope.”

Guo DaLu: “Why not?”

Yan Qi: “Because you are definitely not going to die this time.”

Guo DaLu: “You are certain?”

Sighing, Yan Qi said, “People say you are stupid, and you really are.” As he gazed at Guo DaLu, his eyes suddenly grew very tender, and he said gently, “If I was not certain, how could I allow you to go?”



“You are so stupid.” Mei RuNan stared at Guo DaLu and shook her head. “You are so stupid it is unbelievable.”

Glaring at her, Guo DaLu snapped back, “On what basis are you allowed to say that to me?”

Mei RuNan: “Because you just are stupid.”

Guo DaLu: “And what aspect of me is stupid?”

Mei RuNan: “Every aspect. Why can you not become just a little bit smarter?”

Guo DaLu: “Am I allowed to not be smart? Am I allowed to be a little stupid?”

Mei RuNan: “Of course you are.” She reached out and patted his shoulder as she said in her enchanting voice, “Many girls actually like guys who are a little dense, so feel free to be stupid.”

Guo DaLu: “Are you one of those girls?”

“I am not, nor do I dare,” laughed Mei RuNan while casting a glance down at Yan Qi, who was standing at the foot of the wall. Still giggling, she flew away like a sparrow. Obviously, she did not actually know how to fly, but her form and motions were indeed beautifully light and graceful like a swallow. Guo DaLu stood atop the wall, a foolish little expression on his face as he stared after her.

Biting down on his lip, Yan Qi stomped his foot and shouted, “Dolt! Why are you not hurrying up to follow after her?”

Guo DaLu gazed down at him. The look on his face seemed like he had suddenly perceived something but yet, had not figured anything out. It was as if he wanted to say something, but yet he did not say word. In the end, he finally asked, “Will you wait for me?”

Yan Qi: “You dolt. Of course I will wait for you.”

Guo DaLu: “How long will you wait?”

Yan Qi: “No matter how long, I will still wait.”

Only then did Guo DaLu break into a smile. “Don’t worry. I will certainly give pursuit, and I will definitely not pursue the wrong person.”

A dazed look seemed to be on Yan Qi’s face as he stood at the base of that wall. Perhaps it was not a dazed look; perhaps it was a look of intoxication. Gentleness filled his eyes; red had risen on his cheeks. If this was not intoxication, what was it? But what was he intoxicated about?



Commander Jin.

Someone who was called commander, regardless of whether he was a real commander, would at least carry the air of one.

Commander Jin’s air was very impressive. He was very tall, taller than most people by at least half a head. And not only was he tall, he was strong and sturdy with a broad build.



End of Chapter 31