Happy Heroes 25 Print
Friday, 11 July 2008 11:44

Chapter 24 – The Straw Men’s Secret

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Hong NiangZi blinked at him innocently. “I always thought the one person who understood me the best was you. Do you know why?”

Scarlet Serpent: “Hmph.”

Hong NiangZi: “Because only a woman can truly understand another woman. Everyone knows this principle.”

Wang Dong cried out, “He is a woman?”

Hong NiangZi: “Did you think he is a man?”

Wang Dong: “He looks like one.”


Hong NiangZi: “Even if was a man in the beginning, he spent several decades soaking himself in poisons and had transformed into a woman long ago.” Scarlet Serpent’s entire face froze, like a snake that had been grabbed seven inches from its head. As Hong NiangZi cackled with laughter, she continued, “This is his biggest secret. I should actually not say anything, but fortunately, you are not an outsider so…” Deliberately lowering her voice, she whispered secretively, “I can tell you another secret, too.”

Wang Dong: “What secret is that?”

Hong NiangZi: “I know he and Big Centipede were very ‘good friends.’ ”

Roaring in laughter, Wang Dong corrected her, “You are wrong. They were not ‘friends,’ but actually…”

Throughout the conversation, Scarlet Serpent’s eyes had been fixed upon her. Those eyes, cold as ice, had now turned a fierce green color, and all of a sudden, he aimed directly at her face and blew out a breath. It was only a very light breath, yet Hong NiangZi dodged it as if it was the world’s cruellest and most aggressive projectile weapon. She did not even have a chance to say anything before she had leapt up and, with a flip in midair, landed inside the back of the house. Cui MingFu, who had been behind her the whole time, had already disappeared.

Wang Dong spoke up, “I had not believed a single word she said.”

Scarlet Serpent: “You never were stupid.”

“Why do you say that?” Wang Dong gave an unexpected little laugh before carrying on, “If what she said was not true, though, why would you want to take her life?”

“Do you want me to take your life too?” Scarlet Serpent threatened in a chilly tone.

Wang Dong: “This life of mine has not belonged to the Wang family for a long time now. It does not matter to anyone if it is taken. But what about you?”

Scarlet Serpent: “What about me?”

“No one would mourn,” Wang Dong said. He then asked, “Would anyone be happy?”

Scarlet Serpent: “Yes.”

Wang Dong: “You know she hates you?”

Scarlet Serpent: “Hmph.”

Wang Dong: “Why is it, then, that all this time, she never tried to kill you?”

Scarlet Serpent: “Because she knows that I am more useful alive than dead.”

Wang Dong: “What about in the future?”

Scarlet Serpent: “The future?”

Wang Dong clarified, “In the future, when you are all dividing the money.” Scarlet Serpent’s face had frozen again. “When Big Centipede died, were they sad at all?” Wang Dong asked.

Scarlet Serpent: “Hmph.”

Wang Dong: “Why were they not upset?”

Scarlet Serpent: “Because the shares of money are bigger when divided among three people instead of four.”

Wang Dong: “What if there are only people two people to split the money?”

Turning his head back, Scarlet Serpent glared at him. “What are you trying to say?”

Wang Dong: “You should know what I am trying to say, and you have known this fact for a long time.”

Those bright green eyes suddenly became the color of ashes, cold and impassive.

Wang Dong: “It is always a little better if one mantou [steamed bun] is shared to eat between two people instead of three. Everyone understands this idea, but the question now is, who are the two people who are going to get to eat the mantou?”

Scarlet Serpent: “What do you say?”

“I know how good your kung fu is,” Wang Dong answered casually. “Obviously, you would not be scared of Hong NiangZi.”

Scarlet Serpent: “Hmph.”

Wang Dong: “However, what sort of relationship does she have with Cui Laoda [biggest brother]? What sort of relationship do you have with Cui Laoda? Can you compare to her?”

Scarlet Serpent smiled coldly. Under certain circumstances, if a person gives a cold smile, it means that he does not know what to say in response; it means that his heart is filled with unease. Someone who is usually very confident in everything he does will seldom show that type of cold smile. Therefore, Wang Dong immediately took advantage of this opportunity and continued, “That is why, you must hurry up and think of a plan if you want to eat the mantou.”

Scarlet Serpent hesitated, but at last, he could not help asking, “What sort of plan?”

Wang Dong: “Find another person and have him help you steal that mantou back.”

With another cold smirk, Scarlet Serpent inquired, “And what sort of person should I be looking for?”

Wang Dong: “First, this person cannot be too greedy.”

Scarlet Serpent: “Is there such a person in this world?”

Wang Dong: “I am not a greedy person.”

Scarlet Serpent: “Hmph.”

Wang Dong: “This may not have been true in the past, but I now realize that it is better to have two people share the mantou than have no mantou to eat at all.”

Scarlet Serpent stared intently at him. “What is the second criterion?”

Wang Dong: “Second, that person must be inferior to you.”

Scarlet Serpent: “Why must he be inferior to me?”

Wang Dong: “So that way, he would not dare attempt to plot against you.”

Scarlet Serpent: “And you are inferior to me?”

“If I was stronger than you, why would I need you to carry me on your back now?” Wang Dong pointed out with a grin.

A spark suddenly lit up in those eyes that had been the color of cold ashes. “Are you truly siding with me?”

Wang Dong: “I have no other choice but to side with you.”

Scarlet Serpent: “Why?”

Wang Dong: “Because their side is too complete.”

Scarlet Serpent’s eyes brightened a little more. “What can you do for me?”

Wang Dong: “I still have my hands.”

Scarlet Serpent: “What can your hands do?”

Wang Dong: “At the very least, they can grab ahold of someone.”

Scarlet Serpent was no longer smiling coldly because he was gradually starting to feel more confident.

Wang Dong: “Right now, there is only one remaining question.”

Scarlet Serpent: “Say it.”

Wang Dong: “Are you able to handle Cui Laoda?”

Scarlet Serpent: “What do you think?”

Wang Dong: “If it was a real fight, I do not know. If, though, you strike unexpectedly and attack when he is unprepared, then…” His lips suddenly pressed together. Scarlet Serpent had also closed his mouth before strolling into the manor.



Cui MingFu and Hong NiangZi were already inside. The house was very bright. Under the light of day, Cui MingFu’s face looked like a sheet of white paper – a dry and wrinkled sheet of paper. Some people should not see daylight; he was clearly one of those people.

Scarlet Serpent set Wang Dong down in a chair and addressed them, “You have already looked around.”

Cui MingFu: “We have looked through every place.”

Hong NiangZi piped in with her charming voice, “We even looked in the toilet. The strange thing is, that place did not smell too badly.” She cast a glance over at Wang Dong and added, “Therefore, I know that there is one person in your group of friends who likes cleanliness.”

Wang Dong’s voice was cold as he said, “What else do you know?”

Giggling, Hong NiangZi replied, “I know that person is definitely not you.”

Scarlet Serpent: “Where are his friends?”

Cui MingFu: “They all left.”

Hong NiangZi looked over at Wang Dong again. With her alluring smile on her face, she said, “It seems that the people you befriended lately are not good friends of any sort.”

Wang Dong’s tone was matter-of-fact as he stated, “There are no friends in the world who are truly willing to die with you.” This time, her gaze turned to rest on Scarlet Serpent, who had not seemed to hear or see anything.

“There are no other people in the house?” Scarlet Serpent questioned.

Cui MingFu: “Only these two straw men.”

Wang Dong: “Straw men are not people.”

Cui MingFu all of a sudden let out a chilling cackle. “Do not forget that straw men can kill too.”

Wang Dong’s expression suddenly shifted slightly. All the while, Cui MingFu had fixed his eyes on Wang Dong’s face. In the instant when that slight change in expression occurred, Cui MingFu struck.

Very few people knew what Cui MingFu used to kill people because when he acted, he truly killed. Once he struck, he would never give his opponent the chance to live. Otherwise, he would not bother to attack. Only people who had actually watched him commit murder knew what weapon he used. And only four people had ever seen him murder. Wang Dong had seen him. The weapon he used to kill was two piercers. These piercers were like steel wires, able to wind around and stay close to you like a wandering soul, to entangle your weapons, and to wrap around and break your neck. Or they could stab into your heart in one thrust. These were his “Double Attack Flying Wandering Soul Piercers.”

Many people in jianghu had become famous due to their exclusive weapon because, in a fight, a person has great advantages, many unthinkable advantages, if he uses a bizarre weapon. Therefore, if you are able to invent an exclusive weapon that nobody had previously thought of, you will surely be able to make a name for yourself in jianghu – and that name of yours will be written in other people’s blood. But in the end, you, too, will die by some sort of exclusive weapon that you had never before imagined.



The straw men’s bodies looked very bloated. They were fatter than when they had been flying the kites. Other people may not have observed this point, but there was no way Cui MingFu did not notice because he was the one who made the straw men. Although he had an unintelligent-looking face, he had a pair of skilful hands. People who are genuinely smart do not display their intelligence on their face.

Straw men do not eat fatty meats or drink wine. Why would they suddenly get fat in a single night? Could someone be hiding inside the straw men, ready to jump out in a surprise strike? This was the final attack that Wang Dong, Yan Qi, and the others had planned earlier?

The expression on Wang Dong’s face changed rapidly.

Like lightning, Cui MingFu’s “Double Attack Flying Wandering Soul Piercers” had stabbed the straw men’s hearts. They had stabbed in deep. Extremely deep.



End of Chapter 24