Fish 031: Perhaps

Fish 030: What A Wonder

Mo Li: You might not be human.


The winter sun didn’t give the slightest warmth as Meng Qi leaned against the tree trunk, watching the light falling into the forest.

Memories belonging to the past are always chaotic, like the invisible wind. Although it exists, it cannot be captured. Thinking about it will arouse endless killing intent and anger, then he’ll lose control, so Meng Qi hadn’t thought about those for a long time.

The Great Capital XianYang is the capital of several dynasties, with busy traffic and all the prosperity in the world.

The things in the city is full of commercial goods traveling from the south to the north and east to west, from the pearls of the South China Sea to the wines of the Western Regions, from Dayuan horses to Mongolian horses, from Jiangzhuo’s silk to Bazhou’s brocade, from Huadia wine to Mengding tea, from the Yellow River’s carp to Luohan’s bamboo carvings…various accents are blended where Northern hawkers would invite Southern girls, all talking and laughing with each other.

There are also the influential clans with their tall gates, the noble ladies who’d whip their horses, the beaded jewelry on their heads shining brightly in the sun, and their long black hair fluttering wantonly in the spring breeze.

Both sides of the street were often crowded with men who wanted to see the beauty and when they gather, the restaurant shopkeepers would smile with joy.

In the theater, they’d sing plays under Luoyang’s endless flowers, and flock toward the red-light district.

The teahouses talked about the old affairs of the previous dynasty and discussed the legends of Jianghu. When they heard someone promising, people who’d never known each other would scramble to applaud.

…Meng Qi could remember these scenes vividly.

But he couldn’t find his figure in these memories. No matter the excitement, he is a bystander.

In the 39 years of the Chu dynasty, the world was stable and peaceful, just like a prosperous age.

Even in the most prosperous period of the Chu dynasty, State Teacher Meng Qi didn’t leave any records. This name was more like a shadow occupying an inconspicuous position among the 14 founding heroes and has never appeared alone. Later, he was awarded the rankless title of State Teacher. There’s no need to go to court, so the traces of his existence became thinner.

So much so that if Meng Qi wanted to know his own affairs, he couldn’t start.

There are often scholars who claim to have read through all of history but when citing the fourteen important ministers of the Chu dynasty, they could only name 13. Even though they racked their brains to remember that there’s a State Teacher, they couldn’t remember if he’s surnamed 孟 (mèng = the first month of a season; eldest among brothers) or 蒙 (méng = blind; dim-sighted), and don’t know if his first name is Qi or Wei.

(T/N: FYI, Meng Qi is spelled 孟戚.)

Fortunately, Meng Qi is not too persistent in pursuing his past but more concerned about his illness.

It’s been 15 years since the fall of the Chu dynasty, and as time goes by, fewer and fewer people knew State Teacher Meng Qi.

If each dynasty didn’t have the habit of compiling history books, the name Meng Qi might have been completely erased.

Meng Qi didn’t care about these things about the past generations. When he didn’t have an attack, he was lazy. Nothing is worth his concern, and no one can make him take another look.

Just like he’s in a daze.

He often didn’t know what’s going on and he always blanked out.

Today was different. Meng Qi felt someone approaching him in a daze and quickly woke up.

“Physician?”

Meng Qi moved aside and gave Mo Li a place where he could get the sun.

Anyway, the trunk is thick so there’s no problem with two people.

Mo Li: “…”

He didn’t want to take Meng Qi’s position at all! Is he the kind of physician to occupy a patient’s rest position?

“A rare sunny day.” Meng Qi narrowed his eyes, looking at the sun and sighing.

Physician Mo thought to himself, the sun isn’t warm, so it’s better to squat in a corner away from the wind! If not for his internal strength, he’d have to boil ginger soup and make him drink medicine when he went back.

However, the patient has strong martial arts and willful, so what can the physician say?

“What are you thinking about?” Mo Li looked at Meng Qi. He had a guess which was almost verified.

“What…ah, you mean I might be a spiritual being?” Meng Qi suddenly smiled, “Physician, when I first heard it, it made sense since spiritual beings will not grow old. I don’t remember much of the past but I seem to have no roots, alone and without relatives. Maybe I’m really a spiritual being who came down from the mountain. Seeing the troubled times, I wanted peace in the world, so I ran to assist Li Yuanze, who has the most destiny.”

At that time, the world was in turmoil, the Chen dynasty government corrupt, and all parts of the country were rebelling.

What’s wrong with being a spiritual being? If a person can be a general, why not a spiritual being?

“If this is a story, it’d be very exciting. This spiritual being neither confuses scholars nor eats passers-by, but ran to fight for the world, very ambitious! It looks like my character!” Meng Qi didn’t think he’s boasting at all.

Physician Mo was bitter but silently endured it.

“Unfortunately, this is not a story.” Meng Qi sighed deeply, “The heroes in the stories all have inexhaustible money, the civil servants and generals in the stories are all wealthy and have heirlooms, which is simply unrealistic. Whether a human or a spiritual being, in this raging world, if you fall until you’re badly bruised, you can’t get up.”

“…did State Teacher truly understand?”

Hearing the tone in Meng Qi’s words, Mo Li didn’t feel right. He’s testing the true identity of the other party, not asking the other party what he thinks of the world.

Meng Qi shook his head and said, “Physician must be joking, this is just how I feel.”

“You think it’s a joke since you don’t believe you’re a spiritual being.” Mo Li exposed Meng Qi’s thoughts.

Meng Qi was very curious when he heard this, and wondered if this is part of the physician’s therapy. But how can a person be a spiritual being?

However, out of respect for Mo Li, Meng Qi seriously said: “I’ve heard that spiritual beings can use spells, which are ever-changing, like from male to female and old to young, just to confuse others. They can also turn stones into gold, sprinkle beans to make soldiers, and even in the wilderness, they can cast spells to make the land fertile and make a beautiful home. If I have these magical powers, would I still need to rob General Liu?”

Physician Mo thought to himself, what magical powers, let alone spiritual beings, even dragon veins can’t do those things!

“You raised elixirs and the house that was destroyed later was in the Great Capital, right?”

Mentioning this matter, Meng Qi’s expression changed slightly, and he coldly said: “Yes, in the mountains on the outskirts of the Great Capital.”

Hearing the word mountain, Mo Li’s guess became firmer. He tentatively asked, “How did you raise that pet? Is it locked in a bamboo cage?”

Meng Qi immediately frowned, and dissatisfiedly said: “Why would I lock it up? My pet is very cute.”

Mo Li decided to remind him of one thing. Meng Qi can no longer be deceived by that gerbil.

“…gerbils like to dig burrows the most, and you have elixirs in your house. How do you make them coexist peacefully?”

Meng Qi was stunned as if he had never thought about it. He covered his forehead and said nothing for a long time.

Mo Li didn’t know what Meng Qi is, but the Great Capital has a dragon vein and likes to become a chubby mouse. Meng Qi thought that he’s planting elixirs and raising a gerbil, but maybe the Great Capital’s dragon vein was raising elixirs and Meng Qi?

If that’s the case, then things are complicated.

Since the Great Capital’s dragon vein wanted to abduct him to the capital as soon as they met, Mo Li suspected that Meng Qi was also a dragon vein.

Sure enough, he found the same kind as soon as he left the house.

“If you don’t remember, don’t bother. Let’s talk about something else? Have you ever dreamed before?” Physician Mo seriously consulted with a patient suspected to be of the same kind.

The topic changed too quickly that Meng Qi was a little at a loss: “Dream?”

“Have you ever dreamt of yourself in the water…or running freely in the mountains?” Mo Li almost leaked his secret, so he calmly changed the sentence.

Dragon veins are shaped like mountains, so they’ll definitely appear in the mountains.

Meng Qi looked at Mo Li gravely for a long time before saying: “Physician, we ran four hundred miles last night, which is a very unforgettable memory. I think I can definitely see it in my dreams in the future.”

“…the appearance of a person doesn’t count, I meant a dream of becoming a bird or a beast.”

“No.” Meng Qi didn’t understand. Why couldn’t the physician get past the topic of spiritual beings!

Mo Li was a little disappointed, but not depressed. It wasn’t easy to meet a person suspected to be a dragon vein, but the future is long.

“Okay, let’s go to town now.” Mo Li picked up his bag, looking like the leaving Gu Lin.

“Qinghu Town?” Meng Qi naturally followed.

Mo Li looked back at him and weakly said: “Brother Meng, since last night, we haven’t eaten any food nor drank any water…oh, you don’t count since you drank two sips of lake water. In short, we haven’t eaten anything nor closed our eyes. If you don’t care about your body, how can I treat your illness?”

Meng Qi was startled and nodded quickly as if taught.

As they walked, he insisted on explaining to Mo Li: “I just forgot about this. Did physician suspect I’m a spiritual being because of this?”

“No, I think spiritual beings are like human beings. They also need to eat and rest, and those who can live while not eating or drinking are gods.” Mo Li casually said, “And there are no gods in this world.”

Meng Qi laughed and said: “Physician is really interesting. You believe that there are spiritual beings in this world, but you don’t believe there are gods?”

Mo Li didn’t answer.

They soon arrived in Qinghu Town. They originally just wanted to find something to eat in the warehouse controlled by the Holy Lotus Shrine, then find shelter from the wind to sleep. As a result, the town was filled with blood.

 

About half an hour ago, a group of people from Jianghu broke into the town while armed with weapons.

They came abruptly and directly confronted the congregation of the Holy Lotus Shrine.

The people in Qinghu Town were very fierce when facing ordinary passers-by, but when they saw these Jianghu people with swords, they shrank and hid in the alleys, only probing their heads.

“Someone told me that you’re here to confuse people and killed the merchants in the town.”

A young man with a long sword walked out, well dressed and awe-inspiring.

“Swallowing the property of merchants and killing dozens of lives, the Holy Lotus Shrine should pay their blood debts!” The young man waved his hand and the people behind him immediately pushed out a trembling little servant.

“Can you tell me, did the Holy Lotus Shrine instigate the people here and killed the chief?” The young man patted Xiao Si on the shoulder and asked.

Xiao Si’s face turned pale, wishing to flee this place immediately. Faced with the ferocious gaze of the Holy Lotus Shrine people and the persecuting gaze of the person who brought him, he could only nod his head.

“Very good.” The young man flicked his sword and thrust it into the chest of the Holy Lotus Shrine member.

The person was caught off guard and screamed as blood poured out of him like a fountain.

The sword in the young man’s hand was very sharp. He cut off the other person’s head with a backswing, kicked the corpse, and raised the head in his hand to loudly say: “This is the end of your deceitful words!”

As a result, it didn’t reach the desired effect. The people of the Holy Lotus Shrine were all angered, even the townspeople hiding in the dark were angry and impulsively picked up a hoe or a stick before rushing out while the rest ran to call Master Xiang.

“Kill all the lackeys of the government!”

“…those cunning villains who exploit ordinary people and sell goods at a high price dare to find someone to take revenge? Kill them!”

The townspeople rushed up and raged crazily, even an old woman took off her shoes and threw them over.

The young man didn’t expect this and quickly swung his sword to block, while the people behind him were also busy defending.

The young man was no longer in charge. He laid on the ground, frightened to stand up, and was even stepped on several times. It was so painful that he couldn’t stop his cold sweat.

Rotten vegetable leaves, and rotten eggs…

The young man gradually became impatient, and angrily said: “Don’t care about them, just kill them first!”

His swordsmanship was fairly good and when he used it, those he hit would either be dead or wounded.

When he’s about to slay a bloody path, the young man suddenly heard a sneer, and his arm seemed to be clamped by iron tongs, so painful that he couldn’t lift it.

Master Xiang picked up the young man and fiercely threw him aside, making him hit the wall.

The young man spit out blood and struggled to stand up.

“You’re courting death!”

Seeing that the others were about to run, Master Xiang broke the arms of several people. Coupled with the flurry of chaos caused by the townsfolk, he directly killed two and the rest were either bruised or dying.

“Take them away!”

When Meng Qi and Mo Li returned to Qinghu Town, they saw blood on the ground.

Fish 030: What A Wonder

One thought on “Fish 031: Perhaps

  1. Thanks for translating this! I’ve been waiting years for someone to pick it up. 🙂

How about something to motivate me to continue....

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