Title: Did We Agree To Be Arch-Rivals?
Original Title: 说好成为彼此的宿敌呢[穿书]
Author: 轻风白杨 (Qingfeng Baiyang)
Translated by: ~PurpleLy~
Escorted by the lady in white, Su Yang walked across the chain bridge on the other side of the stump platform of the tree stump mountain and finally arrived at Lesser Jade House’s main entrance under the solitary peak.
A man in dark clothing bearing a cold expression stood at the door, observing the number of people arriving. He stepped forward, nodded and greeted: “Di Ling.”
The lady in white clasped her fists in salute: “Mo shixiong.”
The dark-clothed man swept his gaze over Su Yang and the others and said, “That didn’t take long; they are all good seedlings.”
The lady in white said, “These few young ones are talented. I’ve brought them over first and will return together with Chi Tong to wait for the remaining youths. I will trouble Mo shixiong to first bring them to settle down at the guest compound. I am afraid that the results of the stone forest will only be known later.”
The dark-clothed man nodded and addressed the five of them, “All of you, follow me.”
There were large tracts of green bamboo forests at the foot of Lesser Jade House’s solitary peak. Scattered in the midst of these forests were several small courtyards with white walls and grey tiles.
The dark-clothed man placed Su Yang and the others in a courtyard with three rooms so that they wouldn’t get restless. He said that when the results of the stone forest formation were out, he would bring them together up the mountain to formally pay their respects to the master for being officially accepted as disciples. Afterwards, the dark-clothed man left without even offering them a glass of water.
The five of them in the courtyard looked at each other.
The strange environment of Lesser Jade House and the peculiar behaviour of its inhabitants suddenly made the five originally disagreeable youths feel closer towards one another. Even Pu Lingyun, who loved to kick up a fuss, had calmed down.
“What… what are the rules for this Lesser Jade House?” Fan Xi asked doubtfully.
“I don’t know.” Xu Yunzhan knitted his brows, “But since he asked us to wait, we should wait patiently. This is Lesser Jade House; the people here behave oddly, but there shouldn’t be any ill intentions.”
Fan Xi turned his head to Su Yang and asked, “Young Saint, why the dispute?”
Su Yang was still distracted, and his heart was so confused with his inexplicable abduction into Lesser Jade House that he didn’t hear Fan Xi’s question. For a while, he looked in the direction of the west wing room within the small courtyard in a daze, his eyes not knowing where to focus.
The door of the west wing room was open, and from everyone’s perspective, a corner of the low couch in the room was vaguely visible.
“Young Hero Su cultivated hard last night, Yunzhan should be tired.” Gu Feidi said, “We might as well go to the rooms and rest for a while to rejuvenate our spirits.”
Su Yang suddenly returned to his senses. Hearing these words, he gave a low “oh” and without saying anything more, he walked directly into the west wing master room and flipped the door close with a bang.
Pu Lingyun finally couldn’t help pouting and whispering: “He acted so perversely, I don’t know how he managed to get through the stone forest formation!”
Hearing this, Fan Xi laughed.
Pu Lingyun became angry: “What are you laughing at!”
Fan Xi eyed Pu Lingyun curiously: “Your temper is so bad, I don’t know how you managed to get through the stone forest formation.”
Pu Lingyun: “You—!”
Xu Yunzhan stretched out his hand to stop Pu Lingyun and persuaded him, “That’s enough; in a few days, we’ll all be classmates in Lesser Jade House. Those who can pass through the stone forest formation shouldn’t be iniquitous. Those narrow-minded opinions of the Jianghu do not need to be mentioned within Lesser Jade House. We should also all get along harmoniously in the future.”
Pu Lingyun obediently shut up.
Fan Xi gave a chuckle and turned to address Gu Feidi, “Presumably Young Hero Gu can also see that Young Saint is not a bad person. You will need to properly manage your xiao shimei.”
After speaking, he didn’t look at Pu Lingyun’s expression. Instead, he swung his sleeves leisurely, headed towards the room in the east, entered, and closed the door without looking back.
Xu Yunzhan shook his head helplessly and said, “Let’s go; the main house looks quite spacious, and the three of us should be able to take a rest.”
Once everyone had entered their houses, the courtyard became quiet again except for the rustling of leaves stirred up by the breeze in the surrounding bamboo forest.
Su Yang had a comfortable afternoon rest. When he awoke, the sunset sky was filled with clouds.
He sat up with the blanket and his undershirt, raised his hand, and pushed open the window. He stared out into the courtyard, which had turned a golden red from the rays of the setting sun.
The unpolluted air was very clear, and Su Yang had excellent eyesight due to his martial arts, so much so that he could even see the thin leaves flying at the edges of the bamboo forest. Stirred up by the wind, the leaves became golden, glinting and sparkling, reflecting the sunset’s radiance.
Fan Xi passed by with a tray and saw Su Yang sitting in a daze at the window. He smiled and said, “Young Saint is awake? I’ve just discovered a small kitchen in the corner of the courtyard. There are freshly prepared ingredients and firewood. There are also some ready-made cold snacks and pastries. I’ve heated some water and tea, and was about to call you. How about a cup of tea together?”
Su Yang blinked. He lifted the thin blanket, got out of bed, and opened the door.
Fan Xi entered the house with a smile, bearing a teapot and refreshments: “Young Saint, you really lucked out with the food; I just—”
He looked at Su Yang, who had turned back to the bed to get his clothes, and the voice in his throat suddenly got stuck.
Fan Xi quickly put down the things he was holding onto the Eight Immortals table* by the door and reached the bed with big strides. He picked up the thin blanket, turned around, and quickly draped it over Su Yang’s back.
(*TN: Eight Immortals table = old-fashioned square table that seats eight people.)
His expression was anxious, and couldn’t help pushing Su Yang to sit down at the edge of the bed.
Su Yang clutched the blanket uncertainly and asked, “What’s going on?”
Fan Xi stared fixedly at Su Yang, who was eyeing him.
Su Yang had just woken up; his expression was still a little groggy, with a few traces of red pillow marks on his cheeks. His braid was slightly messed up, and the line from his neck to his face was taut. His light, semi-transparent, white gauze shirt hadn’t been properly straightened out yet. The neckline was slightly open, exposing half of the exquisite arc of his collarbone… His whole person was flushed red in the evening light; it made him captivatingly beautiful, and one wouldn’t be able to tell if he was a woman or a man.
Fan Xi released the edge of the thin blanket and gritted his teeth: “Young Saint, you must not be careless in the future. The material of this silk undergarment is see-through and can barely conceal anything. The flowers on your back… I assume you do not wish for others to see it.”
Su Yang frowned and asked: “Flowers?”
Fan Xi was startled. “The tattoo on your back… you didn’t know?”
Su Yang subconsciously reached into his neckline past his shoulders to touch his back.
There was a tattoo on the Devil Sect’s Young Saint’s back?
Greaaat, yet another detail omitted by the script.
Judging from Fan Xi’s expression, the tattoo seemed to be very significant to the storyline, and he shouldn’t randomly allow others to see it.
Su Yang was expressionless as he pondered. He should really go and read the original work to see what weird and bizarre things were in the author’s brain.
Fan Xi watched as the surprise on Su Yang’s face gradually turned calm, he gritted his teeth and spoke, “Apologies, Young Saint, I didn’t know you were kept in the dark. The Devil Sect Leader actually treats you as… So this should be the way to go; you can’t just blindly endure it; you have to fight against it.”
He paused, then added: “You have now been selected by Lesser Jade House. In the future, when you leave, aaa… you don’t need to return to the Devil Sect anymore.”
Su Yang’s train of thought ceased, and he looked up at Fan Xi, murmuring to himself: Why does this person always talk like this; saying some and omitting the rest ? It sounds uncomfortably strange.
But he couldn’t just bluntly ask—it was fine that the Devil Sect flower aide knew his memory was muddled, but he still had to be more alert with others.
And he still had to run with the storyline! Not go back to the Devil Sect? Absolutely no way!
So Su Yang chuckled: “How is it possible? Devil… Yin Tan Divine Sect is my home. No matter what, I will always go back.”
Fan Xi pursed his lips and said, “Young Saint—at least… Take care to not let others see the tattoo on your back in the future.”
Su Yang nodded and smiled: “Fine.”
Su Yang had just gotten dressed. Before he had time to take a sip of tea, the dark-clothed man who had earlier brought everyone to the small courtyard suddenly reappeared. He told everyone to assemble at Lesser Jade House’s main entrance and prepare to go up the mountain for the admission ceremony.
None of them dared to delay and immediately retrieved their belongings to follow the dark-clothed man out of the courtyard.
The lady in white and the person in red were waiting on the blue flagstone steps at the foot of the mountain, leading three youngsters behind them.
Seeing that all the young martial artists who passed the selection had arrived, the dark-clothed man only said ‘keep up’, then turned around and walked along the slender mountain road to the top of the solitary mountain.
Everyone there knew martial arts; therefore, climbing up the mountain didn’t take much effort. In less than a stick of incense, the group arrived at the main hall of Lesser Jade House, situated halfway up the mountain.
At this time, the remaining rays of the sunset had gradually begun to fade. Thousands of candles had been lit in the main hall, making the entire hall shine as bright as day.
The three seats arranged side by side at the top of the main hall were strangely empty; there were no noble-reverent-teacher figures seated there as Su Yang had imagined based on the script.
In the entire hall, there was only one enchanting woman sitting on the main chair and drinking tea. She looked to be in her thirties. Seeing everyone arriving, she immediately rose and welcomed them.
“Di Ling, Chi Tong, Mo Yun.”
The enchanting woman greeted the three from Lesser Jade House first, then glanced behind them and smiled: “Ah, there’s also a female hero selected this time! Xiao mei mei, would you like to study under me?”
Then, she walked around and scanned Pu Lingyun carefully: “It turns out that it’s Gu shixiong’s disciple from Tengyun Pavilion. You are practicing the Folding Feather Sutra?”
Pu Lingyun nodded and generously paid her respects: “That’s right.”
The enchanting woman smiled: “Presumably your posture and moves are also light and dexterous; perfectly fitting for you to be under my tutelage.”
Just as the two of them had finished speaking, the dark-clothed man asked from the other side, “Why is it you’re here? Shizun* not showing up this time?”
(*TN: Shizun = disciples’ way of addressing their teacher; usually for those who train cultivation. A similar address is “Shifu” which is usually for teachers of martial arts.)
The enchanting woman replied, “Shizun’s message just now said that Shizun is going into seclusion and has left it to us to oversee, select and tutor suitable young martial artists. Zhu shixiong, Wen shixiong and Yang shijie* are approaching a breakthrough and will not come out of seclusion, so there’s only us left. Fortunately, you and I have tutored newcomers before, and this time, there is also Di Ling and Chi Tong to help out.”
(*TN: shixiong = elder martial brother, shijie = elder martial sister, shidi = younger martial brother, shimei = younger martial sister)
The dark-clothed man nodded, “This way is also fine.”
The selected youngsters stood at one side, listening to the conversation between the two, and were unable to make head or tail of it. They discreetly exchanged looks amongst each other without saying a word.
Then they saw the enchanting woman turn to take a dark green scroll painting from the side lounge of the main hall and hang it behind the middle seat.
It was a portrait of a beautiful woman standing on the limestone riverbank of the Lushui River, holding a book in one hand and a brush in the other, her eyes staring off into the distance.
The dark-clothed man said: “Since you’ve all entered Lesser Jade House, you’re all disciples of ‘Immortal Qingbo’. In the future, you will address me as a shixiong or my courtesy name. Shizun is busy with affairs and often goes into seclusion. You all… can pay your respects and perform the teacher-disciple ceremony to this scroll portrait.”
All the young martial artists:
… what kind of weirdly, wondrous place was this Jianghu legendary Lesser Jade House?!
The author has something to say:
Su Yang: You can tell from first glance, this isn’t your run-of-the-mill martial arts school.