I could still remember saying to the bastard before we fought, “I’ll make your life become like dark clouds.”
Recalling this now, what I had said was too one-sided.
When the both of us, bruises littering our whole bodies, knelt before the Jade Emperor, he had thought for a while after hearing about what we had done to the red strings. He had said, “Ease of manner is to be prized. The two of you have committed a wrong, thus punishment is justifiable. You have ruined the future of lovers. I’m punishing you with seven lifetimes of fated, mutual love. This can help you two clear your resentment as well.”
“Wait.” The young man beside me had risked his life and interrupted the Jade Emperor.
“You mean me and …her? This fierce…fierce woman who looks like a man—you want me to have seven lifetimes of fated love with her?”
His voice had changed; maybe he had been scared out of his wits.
I had also been scared out of my wits and could only look at the Jade Emperor in horror…
The Jade Emperor had nodded in confirmation.
I had felt my body fall limp. All my hope had vanished. I had realized that from now on, not only would I become the young man’s dark cloud, but he would also become mine. When we came together, it would be like thunderclouds.
“Xiao Xiang Zi, you’re still Yue Lao’s subordinate. In these seven lifetimes, however, you can’t contact him.”
The Jade Emperor had pondered for a moment before he had asked, “Tou Ta Li, are you there?”
A rough man holding an urn had yelled, “I’m here.”
The Jade Emperor had stroked his long beard and said, “This matter will be handed to you.”
His answer had been full of energy, which had made my heart beat faster. I had taken a deep breath and raised my head to look at the Heaven Emperor Li. His life in heaven had made him fat.
Sensing that I had been looking at him, he had turned around. His face had brimmed with radiance, and his cheeks had turned upwards when he laughed. Uncle had laughed so beautifully.
I had felt my mouth tighten, my always healthy heart beating like crazy. I had taken a deep breath. The always-healthy me felt like I had been about to die at a moment’s notice.
The Jade Emperor had nodded in satisfaction. “Xiao Xiang Zi, do you still have anything left to say?”
I had wanted to say that it was Yue Lao who had messed up the red strings while he had been drunk. If the red strings were messed up, then let them be messed up. There was no need to punish me in such a vicious way!
I had glanced at Yue Lao, and he had gazed at me pitifully, as if pleading me to not expose him. I had turned back around and continued taking deep breaths.
“May I curse?”
“Then…I have nothing to say.”
The Jade Emperor had nodded in satisfaction and had turned to the young man. “Celestial Star Chu Kong, do you have anything left to say?”
Chu Kong…So the young man was the Mao Celestial Star.
- 卯日星君府 (mao ri xing jun fu, I have no idea what it is. Google translate said May God, but on hamster’s blog it was celestial star. I’ll keep hamster’s translation).
Amongst the twelve Celestial Stars, he was the oldest. He looked after the first month of the year. I had finally learned the identity of the young man who would spend seven lifetimes with me.
I had looked up at the ceiling then and had thought that this world was truly ironic.
The young man beside me had stayed silent for a long time, until my curious eyes had fallen on his face. He had said with a straight, pale face, “Although it is our fault for the red strings being messed up in Yue Lao’s house this time, I swear on the God of the Day that this woman messed up more red strings than I. Therefore, can you let this woman suffer a little more every lifetime?”
I had stood up and wanted to pick a fight with him again. Heaven Emperor Li had come to my side and pressed me down. He had calmly said, “I will look at this matter fairly.”
Although Emperor Li’s figure had gotten out of shape, his temperament had still been the same. I had nodded gratefully, feeling that there was still love in this world.
When the sentence was over, everyone had returned to their homes. All across the temple, I had heard Emperor Li’s laugh, “I love seeing the little wife chasing the husband, hahahaha!”
I had stood there, slowly turning into a lonely shadow.
Yue Lao had brought me back to the underworld. He had patted my shoulder and sighed, “Xiao Xiang…”
I had glared at him until he hadn’t dared to say the word he had been about to say. He had sighed again. “No one will look after the temple now that you’re gone. What do I do now?”
I had pouted, saying, “Drink less; that way, you can help me accumulate more virtue.”
Yue Lao had pinched his beard in loneliness. I hadn’t possessed the heart to be mean to him. Even though he had always been stingy, had been a little confused, and had never adhered to the books, he hadn’t treated me badly. He had been unlike other fairies, who treated their own kind with beatings and harsh words.
I comforted him. “One day in Heaven is one year in the mortal realm. At most, seven lifetimes will only be a year. I’ll be back soon.”
Yue Lao had shaken his head and turned around with a hunched back.
Watching his departing figure completely disappear from the underworld, I had turned around and looked at the tall gate.
幽冥地府(you ming di fu, Nether World). These four words on the gate had appeared to be gloomy.
I had removed the wine pot from my waist, looked up at the wine spirits, then had walked to the gate.
I had thought, There’s nothing to be afraid of. Just think of it as coming down to see the world.
There had been more spirits each passing day, wondering how to form a well-behaved row in front of the bridge. Six little spirits had been giving those rows a bowl of soup. The old Madam Meng had been sitting to the side, dozing off.
I had randomly chosen a row and entered the Nether Hell. It had almost been my turn to drink Madam Meng’s soup, but I still hadn’t see that bastard Chu Kong.
While I had been wondering if he had already reincarnated, a golden light flashed in the dark Nether World, making all the spirits dazzled.
I had glanced back. The one in red, full of virtue, wasn’t that the bastard? By his side, there had also been a young girl in pink.
Chu Kong, who had been so fierce when he was fighting with me, had been looking gently at the girl in pink. In the stillness of the Nether World, beside the flow of the river, I could clearly hear him say, “Ying Shi, don’t worry. I’ll be back soon. We’re both men, so Emperor Li will not let me suffer any losses.”
“Even if it’s like that, Chu Kong gege1, you need to pay attention to your safety. I heard that Yue Lao temple’s Xiao Xian Zi has a weird temper. You…you and her together, you need to be wary of her.”
I had looked up at Heaven and thought what I had done to let this little white flower describe me in that way.
The little spirit had coughed twice to remind me to take my soup. Embarrassed, I had laughed and taken the soup. I had been about to drink it when I had heard Chu Kong say, “Don’t worry. Even though her temper is strange, her power and martial arts are both below mine. She can’t do anything to me.”
I had narrowed my eyes and glared at the man who looked like a dog.
Chu Kong had said, “Wait and see how I will handle that eunuch Xiao Xian Zi for seven lifetimes…”
The word ‘eunuch’ had caused me to shake in anger, the bowl of Madam Meng’s soup shaking together with me.
Chu Kong had added, “Then I’ll go count the stars at Morningstar Hall with you.”
“Count your ass…!” I had roared. In front of the little spirit, I had thrown Madam Meng’s soup at the bastard.
The soup had flung skyward while the empty bowl had landed on Chu Kong’s face. He had groaned, covered face and yelled. The eyes that I remembered from our previous encounter had finally been turned purple by me.
I had retorted, “Standing there with those panda eyes and yelling rubbish, don’t you feel pain?” Chu Kong had felt the pain a little later. He had then looked up with eyes full of rage.
The pink-clad Ying Shi beside him had kept mumbling about how her heart was pained at seeing him hurt. From her agonized expression, it felt like I had struck her instead.
I had sneered. Chu Kong had gritted his teeth and looked at me. I saw that a spell had been forming in his hands. It looked like he had wanted to give me a death blow. My calm heart had suddenly raced. After all, in terms of spells, mine were below Chu Kong’s.
At that exact moment, the little spirit had interjected, “You…You threw the soup! Do you want to rebel?!”
His loud voice had woken Madam Meng up. When Madam Meng had moved, the atmosphere in the Nether world turned gloomier. As I was had only been a cloud, my legs had suddenly felt weak as I trembled and pointed at Chu Kong. “It was him! He wants to rebel. That bastard didn’t want to drink the soup. He wanted to see what will happen if I don’t drink the soup. I was forced to do this!”
“Ah?” A deep and husky voice had echoed through the Nether World, making it hard for people to breathe.
“Who doesn’t want to drink the soup that I made?”
Madam Meng had stood up. She was twenty feet tall, casting a shadow in the Nether World.
When she had seen the broken bowl in front of Chu Kong, she had yelled, “Who dares to not drink the soup? This old lady boiled the soup all day. You bastards dare to waste all my efforts?!”
As she had spoken, a huge body had quickly flown above the spirit, so fast that it was inconsistent with her weight. She had landed before Chu Kong, scaring everyone. Even Chu Kong had a pale face.
I had looked around and saw that nobody had been paying attention to me, so I ran and crossed the bridge of reincarnation.
Before going into reincarnation, I had looked back. I only saw the spirits running around and yelling. Madam Meng had been with Chu Kong. Chu Kong had been looking at me. His eyes had been filled of hatred, wanting nothing more than to cut me into thousands of pieces.
I had paused for a moment, feeling that I went a bit overboard…
Before jumping in the circle of reincarnation, I had given him a thumbs-up. Madam Meng had pinched him, causing him to be even more embarrassed. I had smacked my butt and happily walked into the circle of reincarnation.
Chu Kong will not get past without drinking the soup of oblivion. This lifetime, I’ll be born first, and I’ll still have my memory from my previous life. I’m stronger than him. In other words… Little bastard, just wait and see how you’ll die.
- Gege: big brother. Used by girls to call boys who are older and close to them