LXF01-09 PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 15 August 2008 21:42

Chapter 9 - A death too strange



The carriage was not huge, just big enough to carry four people. The horses that were pulling the carriage were very well trained, even though the carriage was traveling on a mud road, it was very stable. Ma XiuZheng and Shi XiuYun sat on one said with Sun XiuQing and Yie XiuZhu sitting opposite of them.

The carriage had been traveling for a long time, Shi XiuYun suddenly noticed that everyone was starting at her. She pretended not to noticed, but at last could not help but pout her lips and challenge everyone.

"Why are you guys all staring at me? Did a flower suddenly sprout on my face?"

"Even if a flower did sprout on your face," Sun XiuQing laughed and replied, "it would have been picked just then."

Her eyes were big and her lips were thin, it was obvious to anyone she meets that she was the kind of girl who would never hold anything back when making fun of someone.

She did not let Shi XiuYun reply before continuing.

"The weird thing is, girl here always claims that any kind of flower would never be as good as a vegetable, so how come suddenly she says flower this and flower that as soon as she opens her mouth?"

Amazingly, Shi XiuYun did not blush, instead she casually replied: "Nothing weird about that at all, it's because his surname is Hua, flower, so of course I'm going to say flower this and flower that."

"He?" Sun XiuQing laughed a little. "Who's he?"

"His surname is Hua, Hua ManLou."

"How do you already know his name?"

"He just told me."

"How come I didn't hear it?"

"We were talking about our stuff, why must we let you hear everything? Besides, you were probably thinking of Lu XiaoFeng at that moment anyways."

"I was thinking of Lu XiaoFeng?" Sun XiuQing almost screamed. "Who said I was thinking about him?"

"Me," Shi XiuYun answered. "While he was sitting in the bath tub, you couldn't take your eyes off of him, I noticed it the entire time, you can't deny that now."

Sun XiuQing was laughing and throwing a fit at the same time.

"Can you guys believe how crazy this girl is? Everything that comes out of her mouth is a lie." She scolded, with a smile on her face.

"That girl really is a bit crazy," Ma XiuZheng casually answered. "But your eyes was on Lu XiaoFeng the entire time."

"Thank you, Eldest Martial Sister, for being fair," Shi XiuYun laughed, waving her hands.

Sun XiuQing's eyes twirled around for a bit before she suddenly sighed.

"She was being fair, but there was a tinge of sourness in what she said."

"Sourness?" Now it's Ma XiuZheng's look up astonished. "What sourness?"

"A kind of sourness somewhat like vinegar."

"Are you saying that I'm eating vinegar, that I'm jealous of you?" Now Ma XiuZheng was starting to yell as well.

{Note: in everyday Chinese, the expression "chi cu", or "eating vinegar", is often used to describe that tinge of jealousy that one feels in matters of the heart are involved.}

"I didn't say it," Sun XiuQing replied. "You just said it yourself."

With much effort, she suppressed her laughter and continued, not letting others responde. "All these people say that Lu XiaoFeng is so smooth and so suave and so charming and so this and so that. But when I saw him today, sitting in the bath tub like that, he was just like a retard or something, nothing compared to that XiMen ChuiXue."

"What are you saying?" Shi XiuYun yelled in shock.

"What I'm saying, is that if I had to pick a man, I would definitely pick XiMen ChuiXue. Now there is a real man there, better than 10 Lu XiaoFeng's."

Shi XiuYun sighed.

"From here, it looks like you are the one that's crazy. Even if all the men in the world died, I would never pick that arrogant and conceited living corpse."

"You don't like it, I do. This is called 'cabbages and carrots, to each her own'."

Ma XiuZheng could not stop herself from laughing anymore.

"From the looks of you two, it seems like you guys have already partitioned out the cabbages and carrots."

"And the one we partition to you is that big carrot, Lu XiaoFeng!" Sun XiuQing said, trying to hold back her laughter.

Shi XiuYun blinked.

"Then doesn't Third Sister Yie get nothing?"

Yie XiuZhu's face was already blushing furiously.

"Will you look at yourselves?" Yie XiuZhu said, still blushing. "You have only met them once and it looks like you girls are going mad thinking of them, it's not like you girls have never met other men in your lives before is it?"

"We have never met any men like them," Sun XiuQing sighed.

She shot a look at Yie XiuZhu out of the corner of her eye and continued.

"To be honest, any of the three men that we met today is pretty good, even though you won't admit it, you probably like all three of them don't you?"

"You... you must be crazy." Yie XiuZhu was so distraught that somehow her face got even redder.

"Number Two Sun over there always have this problem, and that is that she loves to bully honest people."

"Her? Honest?" Sun XiuQing pouted her lips. "She looks honest on the surface, but of us four, I guarantee that she'll be the first to marry."

"What... what makes you say that?" Yie XiuZhu asked.

"Because she knows that she won't be the first one to marry," Shi XiuYun jumped in before Sun XiuQing could answer. "Forget about men with four eyebrows, even men with four times his courage won't dare to marry her."

"That sounds about right," Ma XiuZheng concurred. "Anyone who marries a woman like her would surely be killed by a brain tumor from listening to her talk."

"Maybe if she finds a deaf then...." Shi XiuYun added, trying to hold back her laughter, and failing miserably.

Sun XiuQing had already stood up by now and was yelling: "Oh I see how it is, all three of you are ganging up against me. Well ok, I'll let you three have the three men, there, satisfied?"

"Let us have them?" Shi XiuYun replied. "Are these three men yours or something?"

"This girls knows a heck of alot," Ma XiuZheng sighed, "but she sure doesn't know any shame."

Sun XiuQing stared at them before suddenly shouting at the top of her lungs: "I'm starving!"

Ma XiuZheng stared at her in shock, as if she was looking at a truly insane person.

Sun XiuQing could not help but laugh at herself either.

"Whenever I get mad, I get hungry. Now that I'm mad, I have got to find a place to eat."

When four girls get together, it would almost impossible to get them not to talk about men. Just like if four men got together, to make them not talk about women would be equally impossible.

But Lu XiaoFeng and Hua ManLou were not discussing women, they were not in the mood. They were discussing XiMen ChuiXue.

"I only hope that he hasn't found DuGu YiHe yet." Lu XiaoFeng observed.

"You don't think he is a match for DuGu YiHe?" Hua ManLou asked.

"His sword techniques are quick and lethal, not one bit of compassion in them, just like the person that he is, it never leaves any choice for his foes."

Hua ManLou slowly nodded.

"If a man leaves no choices for his foes, it is the same as not leaving himself any choices." He observed.

"That is why, once his sword is unsheathed, if it can't injure others, then he has consigned himself to death!"

"But he isn't dead."

"That's only because he hasn't met a foe like DuGu YiHe until now."

Lu XiaoFeng paused momentarily before continuing.

"DuGu's sword techniques carry behind them a nastiness, with great inner strength, devastating offensives and an even more devastating defense, add to that the fact that his experience in fighting is something that XiMen could not match. That's why if XiMen can't succeed by the 30th move, then he would undoubtedly die under DuGu's sword."

"And you think that there is no chance of him succeeding within 30 moves?"

"Nobody can take DuGu's life within 30 moves, that applies to XiMen ChuiXue as well!" Lu XiaoFeng sighed.

Hua ManLou was silent for a long time before letting out a sigh of his own.

"You were the one who asked him to get into this."

"And that is why I am hoping that he hasn't found DuGu yet."

They have already passed the quiet and peaceful road and made it to a little river just outside of the Pearl and Diamond Pavilion.

Under the bright and clear waxing moon, the water shimmered like a shattered piece of silver. A person stood by the river, clothing as white as the snow.

When Lu XiaoFeng saw him, he saw Lu XiaoFeng as well.

"I'm not dead yet." He suddenly said.

Lu XiaoFeng laughed.

"You really don't look much like a dead person."

"The one who died is DuGu YiHe." XiMen ChuiXue replied.

Lu XiaoFeng stopped laughing.

"You can't figure out why?"

Lu XiaoFeng admitted it, he did not want to.

But now XiMen ChuiXue let out a little laugh, a very strange and peculiar laugh. "I can't figure out why either." He said.

"Oh?"

"When Su ShaoYing made his 21 moves, I have already seen 3 openings."

"So you thought that you had at least 3 opportunities to kill DuGu YiHe?"

XiMen ChuiXue nodded.

"Usually, I only need one opportunity, but when I was fighting him, I could not grasp any one of the opportunities at all."

"Why?"

"Even though his techniques had openings, as soon as I start to make my move with my sword, he would immediately compensate for the openings. I have never met anyone who knows where the openings of his very own techniques are, but he knew."

"All the sword skills in the world have openings, but there really isn't that many who knows where the openings of his own sword skills are." Lu XiaoFeng agreed.

"I made my move 3 times, all three times they were fended off, by then I knew I couldn't kill him. If you couldn't kill with a sword technique that only kills, then it is you who are to die."

"Although you are conceited, at least you know your own weaknesses." Lu XiaoFeng sighed. "That is why you are still alive!"

"I am still alive only because after 30 moves, his techniques suddenly turned chaotic."

"A master like him, if his techniques suddenly turn chaotic, there can only be two reasons."

XiMen ChuiXue waited for further explanation.

"If his heart and mind was in turmoil, then his sword techniques must as well."

"His heart and mind was not in turmoil."

"Could it be that his inner strength was running out?"

Without strength, sword techniques would turn chaotic as well.

"With his inner strength and skill, how could he have completely used up his inner strength after just 30 exchanges?" Lu XiaoFeng wondered.

"I said it myself, I can't figure out why either."

Lu XiaoFeng thought silently.

"Could it be that before he fought with you, someone else had made him use up alot of his inner strength? Maybe someone had already fought with him before you?"

"He didn't say, so I wouldn't know," XiMen ChuiXue coldly replied. "Had I known, then I would not have forced him to fight."

"When you force other people to fight, when was the last time you gave your foes an opportunity to speak?" Lu XiaoFeng said with a pathetic smile.

Although there was no expression on XiMen ChuiXue's face, shades of shadowes seemed to have crept into his eyes.

"He said something strange just before he died." He slowly said, after a long long silence.

"What did he say?"

"He said he...."

When the sword was pulled out, there was still blood on the blade.

When DuGu YiHe saw that the other person's sword had his blood on it, saw his blood being gently blown off drop by drop, there was no pain or anger or horror on his face. On the contrary, he suddenly shouted: "I understand now, I understand now...."

"He said he understood now!"

"What did he understand?" Lu XiaoFeng frowned.

The shades of shadows inside XiMen ChuiXue's eyes darkened even more as he actually let out a prolonged sigh.

"Maybe he understood that life is short, like the morning dew. Maybe he understood that the fame and power he gave up everything for, in the end was nothing...."

Lu XiaoFeng thought deeply.

"Precisely because life is short, you can't live it for nothing," he slowly said. "What did he really understand? Or is it didn't understand? What did he really want to say?"

XiMen ChuiXue stared at the horizon for a long time before suddenly uttering a very unexpected phrase of his own.

"I'm hungry."

"You are hungry?" Lu XiaoFeng looked at him in shock.

"I always get hungry after I kill," XiMen ChuiXue coldly replied.

______________________________

This small little wine shop should have been closed by now, residing as it did on the outskirts of a thick and dense white mulberry grove.

There were several households inside the woods, there were also several households outside the woods, mostly small little families making a living raising silkworms.

This particular little house was somewhat close to the road, so they built a little small hut with windows on all four sides out in the front and bought some simple wine and food for the passerbys. When the Four Beauties of E'Mei found this place, the owner was just about to go to bed, but then again how could anyone refuse four beautiful girls like them?

Inside the little wineshop was just three tables, but they were kept very clean and neat. The little dishes made to go down with the wine were simple yet refreshing and the light tasting wine was just the flavor that the girls liked, so they were having a great time.

When girls are having a great time, they would always talk much more.

They were gossiping left and right, laughing, just like a group of happy little hens.

"That guy with the surname of Hua," Sun XiuQing suddenly observed, "he seemed to have a bit of a south-of-the-river accent, could he be from that Hua family?"

"Which Hua family?" Shi XiuYun asked.

"That Hua family from south-of-the-river. Rumors say that you could take a horse and gallop at full speed for an entire day and still be inside their land."

"I know about this family as well," Ma XiuZheng cut in. "But I don't think Hua ManLou is of that family."

"Why not?" Sun XiuQing asked.

"I heard that this family led the most extravagant of lives, and is very particular about what they drink, eat, and wear, even their staple man looked like a millionaire walking around about town. But that Hua ManLou looked like a very simple man. Not only that, I have never heard anything about one of their disciples being blind."

Shi XiuYun immediately snickered.

"What's the big deal about being blind? Even though he is blind, but he could see so much more than the four of us who have eyes could see put together."

Ma XiuZheng did not know if she should say this, so she changed gear a bit and smiled.

"His kungfu skills are really pretty good, even I didn't think that he could just casually catch your sword in between his fingers like that."

"That maybe because this little girl here was already smitten with him by then." Sun XiuQing joked.

Shi XiuYun shot her an angry look.

"If you feel up to it, you can give him a try next time if you want. I'm not bragging for him or anything, but there aren't that many in this world who could match that move of his."

"How about XiMen ChuiXue? Was that move of his shabby?" Sun XiuQing replied.

Shi XiuYun did not reply, because she could not but admit that move by XiMen ChuiXue was truly frightening.

"I heard that not only is XiMen ChuiXue's sword skills without peers, his family is quite well off as well, Thousand Plums Mansion's extravagance and wealth is definitely not any levels under the Huas." Ma XiuZheng chipped in.

Sun XiuQing's eyes shone.

"I like him, not because of his wealth or family, even if he was a penniless pauper, I would still like him."

"From head to toe, I really can't see a single attractive feature about him." Shi XiuYun casually observed.

"Why must be able to see his attractive points? As long as I...."

She suddenly stopped talking, her face suddenly flushed to a blood red, red to the very roots of her ears.

Because at this moment a man walked in from outside, clothing as white as the snow, none other than XiMen ChuiXue.

Shi XiuYun could not say anything more either, all four gossiping girls suddenly all stopped.

Not only did they see XiMen ChuiXue, but also Hua ManLou and Lu XiaoFeng.

With a pair of piercing eyes like daggers, XiMen ChuiXue stared at them. He suddenly walked up to them.

"Not only did I kill Su ShaoYing," he coldly announced, "but I also killed DuGu YiHe."

The colors on all four girls' faces changed, especially Sun XiuQing's face, which turned as white as a sheet, without the slightest trace of blood.

In a young girl's heart, hate is very easily replaced with the feeling of love. Besides, Su ShaoYing always was a little too conceited, thinking that his four martial sisters should all be fighting over him, hence he was not well liked by any of them. But the killing of master was a completely different matter.

"What... what did you say?" Sun XiuQing had to ask again.

"I killed DuGu YiHe."

Shi XiuYun suddenly jumped up from her seat and began to shout.

"My Second Martial Sister likes you that much, how... how... how could you go and do something like that!"

Nobody could have expected her to say something like that, even XiMen ChuiXue seemed somewhat taken aback.

Sun XiuQing's face was alternately green and red. Suddenly, grinding her teeth together, the two swords inside of her sleeves shot out, the glow of the swords flashed as they fiercely flew towards XiMen ChuiXue's chest.

But XiMen ChuiXue did not responde, instead, he gently flicked his sleeves up and his body smoothly slid back, slid back two or three meters.

"I'm going to kill you!" Sun XiuQing shrieked, her eyes already a teary red.

Twirling her swords around, jaws clenched, she dove towards XiMen ChuiXue. The moves of her weapons were based upon quickness and sudden changes, the flashes of swords blinds one's eyes as if they were water droplets from a huge splash as she, in a blink of an eye, attacked 7 times.

Her sisters' swords were also out.

"This is a matter between us and XiMen ChuiXue, other people better not interfere." Shi XiuYun loudly declared.

She obviously meant that for Hua ManLou. In reality, Hua ManLou could not interfere even if he wanted to.

But how could he just stand there and let these four innocent girls die under the sword of XiMen ChuiXue?

At this precise moment, a long "bang" could be heard as XiMen ChuiXue suddenly reached out and flicked Sun XiuQing's wrist, hitting the sword in her left hand into the one in her right hand.

When the two swords met, she felt her wrist temporarily go numb, before she knew it, the two swords were suddenly in XiMen ChuiXue's hands.

"Stand back, or else I will unsheath my sword!" XiMen ChuiXue coldly ordered.

His voice was cold, but his eyes were not, that was why Sun XiuQing was still alive.

He was still human, still a man, how could he bring himself to kill a beautiful girl with feelings towards himself.

Sun XiuQing's face was even whiter as her eyes filled with tears.

"I already said I'm going to kill you, if I can't kill you, then... then I will die in front of you!" She said, still clenching her jaw.

"Dying won't do a thing, if you want revenge, then go back and get everybody from all 108 buildings of Green Shirt Pavilion." XiMen ChuiXue coldly sneered.

Sun XiuQing looked surprised and caught completely off guard.

"What did you say?" She uttered.

"Since DuGu YiHe is the Helmsman of the Green Shirt Pavilion, then...."

Sun XiuQing did not let him finish.

"You say my master is a member of the Green Shirt Pavilion? Are you crazy?" She demanded, with fury in her voice and her eyes. "This entire trip here happened because my master received some information that the First Pavilion of the Green Shirt Pavilion is at...."

Suddenly, a "twang" came from outside the back window as a flash of black streak came shooting through the window and hit Sun XiuQing in the back.

Sun XiuQing's body twitched quickly and fell towards XiMen ChuiXue.

Shi XiuYun was the closest to the back window. With an angry shout, she turned around and dove towards the window. But at that precise moment, another black streak came flashing through the window at her with such ferocity and speed that she could not get out of the way.

She screamed, the swords in her hand flew out, but her body fell.

By now, Sun XiuQing had fallen into XiMen ChuiXue's arms. Suddenly, XiMen ChuiXue grabbed her around the waist with one hand and unsheathed his sword with the other; with a flash of the sword, his body literally became one with the sword flash and flew out of the window.

Lu XiaoFeng, on the other hand, had long jumped out using another window. Ma XiuZheng and Yie XiuZhu shouted in anger and came chasing out as well.

In the middle of the night, the night wind breezed through the little garden outside the windows, not a trace of human shade could be seen.

Beyond the mulberry grove, there came the sounds of hounds howling. The flashes of XiMen ChuiXue had entered the grove.

Without any regards toward their own safety, Ma XiuZheng and Yie XiuZhu ran in as well.

The families that lived inside the woods had already gone to sleep, there was no light to be seen, not even the flash of XiMen ChuiXue's sword.

"Let's go!" Ma XiuZheng said. "No matter what, we have to get her back!"

Before she even finished, the two of them disappeared.

A yellow dog ran howling towards a small road in the back of the grove.

Lu XiaoFeng had stopped chasing, he suddenly stopped underneath a tree, bent over, and pick something up....

The owner of the wine shop was curled up in the corner, not a trace of blood was left on his face.

Hua ManLou bent over and, gently as he could, brought Shi XiuYun up in his arms. Her heart was still beating, but beating very weakly.

A deathily gray color had frighteningly appeared on her beautiful face. Slowly, her eyes opened and stared at Hua ManLou.

"Why... why haven't you left." She lightly said.

"I'm not leaving," Hua ManLou gently replied. "I'm staying here with you."

A strange expression appeared in Shi XiuYun's eyes, seemingly comfort, also seemingly sadness.

"I didn't think you would still recognize me." She said, barely able to sum up enough strength to smile.

"I will always recognize you."

Shi XiuYun smiled again, a sad and lonely smile.

"Even though I didn't become a mute, I'm about to die. Dead people can't talk either can they?"

"You... you won't die, I'm sure of it."

"You don't need to comfort me, I know. I'm hit by poison needles."

"Poison?" Hua ManLou's expression changed noticeably.

"Because I feel as if my entire body is numb, that's probably the poison acting up, why don't you... you feel my wound, it's probably very hot."

She suddenly grabbed Hua ManLou's hand and placed it on her wound.

Her wound was right over her heart, her chest was soft, smooth, and warm. As she pressed Hua ManLou's ice cold hands onto her soft chest, her heart suddenly started beating much faster.

Hua ManLou's heart was beating as well. At this moment, he heard Lu XiaoFeng's voice from outside the window.

"What was she hit with?"

"Poison needles."

A long silence.

"You stay there with her, I'm going to go find a person."

By the time Lu XiaoFeng finished his sentence, his voice seemed to be coming from very far away.

"You really haven't gone," Shi XiuYun said, trying to breath. "You are really here with me!"

"Close your eyes, let me... suck the poison needles out."

Shi XiuYun's deathily white face gained a hint of red as her eyes glowed in the dark.

"You are really willing to do that?"

"As long as you are willing...." Hua ManLou seriously replied.

"I'm willing to do whatever, but I don't want to close my eyes, because I want to see your face."

Her voice got weaker and weaker, until at the end the smile on her face suddenly froze and that glow in her eyes suddenly disappeared.

Death. Suddenly and silently it had stolen her from inside Hua ManLou's arms.

But her eyes seemed as if they were still staring at Hua ManLou, staring at him forever....

Darkness. But all that was in front of Hua ManLou's eyes was darkness.

He suddenly hated himself for being blind, hated himself for even being able to look at her one final time.

She was so young, but her vivacious and young body had suddenly turned cold and stiff.

Gently, Hua ManLou removed his hand, tears had already started to flow down from inside his eyes.

He did not leave, nor did he move. For the first time, he felt the harshness and cruelty of life.

Wind blew in from the windows, wind blew in from the door, the warm April wind felt to him like the bitter cold winds of Winter.

He suddenly discovered that the wind carried with it wave of wave of a flowery fragrance. Suddenly the back window crackled. He snapped his head around and was prepared to jump up.

But instead a sweet and warm voice came from outside the window

"Don't be frightened, it's me!" the voice gently said to him.

This voice was just the one that he was familiar with, this person, also was just the one that he had been thinking about the entire time.

"FeiYan?" He could not help but utter in a slight shout despite of himself.

"Yes, it's me. Didn't think you could still recognize my voice."

A person lightly floated in from the back window, her voice carried with it a tinge of jealousy and envy.

"I thought that you had forgotten all about me." She cooly said.

Hua ManLou stood there, as if he was dumbstruck, only after a long time did he recover from the surprise.

"How... how did you suddenly get here?"

"Are you saying that I shouldn't have come?"

"No, it's just that I didn't expect it," Hua ManLou shook his head and sighed. "I thought you were already...."

"Did you think I was already dead?"

Hua ManLou was at a lost as to what to say.

ShangGuan FeiYan cooly sighed again.

"If I'm to die, then I would have to die like her, in your arms."

She slowly walked up to just in front of Hua ManLou.

"I was watching you two earlier, I... I felt terrible, if it wasn't for the fact that she's dead, I might have killed her."

Hua ManLou was silent.

"I heard you sing once." He suddenly said after a long time.

"Was it outside of Thousand Plums Mansion, from inside an abandoned shrine?" She enquired in a heavy voice.

"Mmm."

This time it was ShangGuan FeiYan who was quiet.

"But by the time you found the place, I had already left." She quietly said.

"Why did you leave?"

Her voice got even quieter.

"You should know better than anyone that I didn't want to leave."

"Someone forced you to leave?"

"I was forced to sing that song as well, I didn't know why at the time, but then I realized that they wanted to lure you to that shrine."

"They? Who are they?"

ShangGuan FeiYan did not answer this question, but her voice suddenly began to shake, as if she was frightened.

"Did you already fall into their hands?"

"It's best if you don't know too much, or else... else...." Her voice was shaking badly.

"Or else what?" Hua ManLou could not help but ask.

ShangGuan FeiYan was quiet for a long time again.

"They lured you there to warn you about interfering in this matter, they wanted you tell you that I had already fallen into their hands." She did not let Hua ManLou interupt her and continued. "The reason why they wanted me to come here today was also to talk you out of interfering with this matter again. Else... else they would make me kill you!"

"They want you to come and kill me?" Hua ManLou was startled.

"Yes, because they know that you would never expect me to harm you and would never guard against me. But they didn't realize that I could never bring myself to harm you in anyway."

She suddenly lounged forward and put her arms tightly around Hua ManLou.

"By now you probably realize who they are," she said in a shaky voice. "But you could never imagine just how frightening powerful they really are...."

Yan TieShan and DuGu YiHe were both dead, the only person who could want to stop this was Huo Xiu.

"No matter how frightening their power is, you don't need to be afraid...." Hua ManLou said in a heavy voice.

"But I really am scared, not for myself, but for you. If it wasn't for me, you guys would not have been dragged into this, if something should happen to you, how could I go on living like that?"

She was holding on to him as tight as she could, but her body was still shaking. Her breath carried with it a sweet and tender fragrance.

Hua ManLou held his arm out and wanted to hold her tight too.

But at his side still laid the body of Shi XiuYun, a young girl filled with such passion and love, who had just died within these two arms of his, how could he possibly use those same two arms to hold another?

His heart was filled with pain and conflict, he wanted to control his own emotions and feelings, but just could not.

When his thoughts returned to holding her, however, she suddenly pushed away.

"You probably understand what I'm saying now."

"No, I don't understand."

"No matter if you understand or not, I... I have to leave now."

"Leave?" Hua ManLou could not help but sound desperate. "Why must you leave?"

"I don't want to go either, but I must!" Her voice filled with sadness and apprehension. "If you have any feelings for me in you, then please don't ask me why anymore, or drag my hands, else not only will you harm yourself, but me as well!"

"But I... I...."

"Let me go, as long as I know that you are alive and well, I'll be happy and satisfied. Even if you are to wrong me...."

Her voice was more and more distance, and suddenly vanished. Darkness. Hua ManLou suddenly found himself trapped inside a boundless darkness and loneliness. I knew that there must be circumstances beyond her control that forced her to leave.

But all he could do was stand here like an idiot, he could not help her, he could not free her from her troubles, he could not even comfort her, just like a little before when all he could do was let Shi XiuYun die in his arms.

"What kind of a man am I? What am I?" There seemed to be a voice laughing at him by his side. "You are nothing but a blind man, a useless blind man!"

A blind man's life, is supposed to be filled with darkness, a hopeless darkness.

His fists were clenched as he stood in the April night breeze. He suddenly discovered that life was not as perfect as he had imagined it to be. Life was filled with many unavoidable sorrow and pain.

He did not know of any way to escape it all.

April was supposed to be the season when swallows returned home, but his little swallow had just flown away, flown away like the best years of our lives, never to return. He slowly walked onto the grass outside the door, they were already dripping wet from the dew.