Chapter 23 : Jade Mirror Pond Ice Games

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~

Su Yang smiled and kicked Fan Xi: “What? I used to look very sissy?”

Fan Xi was puzzled: “Si—what?”

Su Yang quieted before saying, “Nothing.”

He restrained his smile and leaned on the pavilion railing while looking at the pond and the cliff, muttering: “If it wasn’t because of this face…”

The face of the Devil Sect’s Young Saint, Su Yang, was exactly the same as his own. Even the red mole at the edge of his eye was in the same position. If it hadn’t been for this face of his ‘that had brought calamity the country and-ruined the people’*, he wouldn’t have been selected by the casting director. If he hadn’t been cast in that show, he wouldn’t have unexpectedly transmigrated into this world.

(*TN: Su Yang is exaggerating by using a Chinese idiom here. It’s similar to a line from the play Doctor Faustus by Christopher Marlowe: “Was this the face that launched a thousand ships…” referring to Helen of Troy and her abduction that had caused the Trojan Wars.)

Although he’d lived here for half a year, Su Yang still did not harbour a sense of belonging to this world.

Seeing Su Yang’s desolate expression, Fan Xi did not know what was going through his mind and began to frown.

“At the moment, are you still firm on your decision to return to the Devil Sect after graduating from Lesser Jade House?” Fan Xi asked.

Su Yang nodded, “I have to go back.”

Fan Xi asked, “What happens if you don’t go back?” 

Don’t return?

How do I go along with the plot if I don’t return?

Although Su Yang reasoned like this, he really couldn’t answer like that.

So he put on a profoundly unfathomable demeanour and smiled, saying, “If I don’t return… I might die.”

Fan Xi’s grip on the pavilion railing suddenly tightened, and he was speechless for a some time.

The pavilion was filled with a strange silence.

Su Yang was a little baffled. He surmised: had his answer frightened Lil’ Fan Xi?

If I don’t return, I might die’ was certainly some nonsense he’d made up. Seeing that the person had been shocked, he wondered… Should he clear that up and then apologise?

But before he could speak, a figure in red suddenly swooped down from the sky and landed outside the pavilion.

Chi Tong’s face was full of anger and trepidation. “Have you all seen Luo Yin?”

Upon hearing this, the conflict on Fan Xi’s face disappeared, and he snorted with laughter: “Again?”

Chi Tong fidgeted and clutched his head: “Here we go again? That brat better not to ask me to hold on, if not …hnng hnng*…”

(*TN: This is the sound of Chi Tong mumbling/ grumbling)

Fan Xi said, “We haven’t seen him. His camouflage skills have reached their limit. If you can’t find him, even more so for us.”

Chi Tong was exasperated and ignored the two of them. With a flick of sleeves, he used light footwork and rushed along the mountain trail.

Su Yang hadn’t been out for a long time and rarely communicated with Gu Feidi. He felt that he was a little out of touch with Lesser Jade House, and couldn’t help sighing.

Fan Xi noticed that Su Yang’s expression had changed to become a little confused, so he smiled and said, “Do you remember Luo Yin, the one who didn’t say anything when he first entered and had no sense of existence?”

Su Yang nodded: “Although I have no recollection of what he looks like, I know that Chi Tong is tutoring him. What’s up with him?”

Fan Xi said hesitantly, “Chi Tong is also extremely talented. Seeing as Luo Yin can go unnoticed in the crowd, he found him a set of turtle-breathing skills, camouflage inner strength techniques together with stealth, and assassination martial arts. The intent is to cultivate him into an assassin who can come and go without leaving a trace.”

Su Yang was also amused: “That’s a very good idea; since Luo Yin has no sense of existence, concealment skills are very suitable for him.”

Fan Xi laughed heartily: “Chi Tong initially wouldn’t teach him but still ended up doing it anyway! On the day after the Mid-Autumn Festival, I’m not sure what Lou Yin did to anger Chi Tung, but he became so hopping mad and started hunting for Luo Yin everywhere. Regardless, if Luo Yin wants to hide, no one would be able to catch him. Chi Tong threatened to turn Lesser Jade House inside out but still failed to catch him. In the end, Luo Yin himself returned to obediently accept his punishment.”

“Ever since then, they would have an occasional argument. Everyone gradually got used to it, and all would watch the hype from the sidelines.”

“But so far, no one knows what they’re arguing about. We’ve never met up with Luo Yin, nor have we been able to catch him. We went to ask Chi Tong but he refused to reveal anything. Even Li shijie is bemused.”

While Su Yang listened to Fan Xi’s story, his eyes were drawn to the pond and waterfall below the cliff. There was a smile tugging at the corners of his mouth that he himself didn’t notice.

Once the strange awkwardness between the two had passed, Fan Xi put on his carefree smile again.

He followed Su Yang’s gaze and looked down the cliff in surprise: “Ah, the Jade Mirror Pond’s waterfall is frozen! I passed by a few days ago and it wasn’t frozen as solid as it is now…”

“Jade Mirror Pond?” Su Yang asked in amazement.

He seemed to have heard of that name before, but he just can’t recall which had person mentioned it. Maybe Gu Feidi and Di Ling had spoken about it that day?

Fan Xi smiled and said, “Jade Mirror Pond’s surface is clear and calm; it’s a good place for ice games… Young Saint, have you ever played ice games?”

Su Yang had never heard the term ‘ice games’ before, so he shook his head.

Fan Xi said, “This is perfect. New Year’s Day is approaching, and we should have fun and excitement too. I’ll go back to ask Li shijie for some tools and make some ice clogs. I’ll take you to Jade Mirror Pond for ice games!”

Su Yang thought to himself that since he’s been forbidden to enter seclusion, there was nothing much to do. So if he can go have fun, he’ll go have fun. He nodded in agreement.

The next few days were a bit boring.

Unable to enter seclusion, Su Yang began to stroll around Lesser Jade House’s mountain peak besides doing his morning exercises and afternoon meditations. For the past six months, he’d never seen the scenery and rushed to look at them all at once. Every now and then, he would go to the martial arts field to watch others practice heavy sabres and swords, but he never joined in to compete.

Gu Feidi and Xu Yunzhan had a good relationship, and often met for tea and chess. Fan Xi had ensconced himself in the hall, fiddling with his creations. Without his constant harassment, Pu Lingyun had also started feeling somewhat listless lately. She began to seek out Gu Feidi and Xu Yunzhan to gather pine needles and plum blossoms, saying she would use them for making tea.

As for Luo Yin, he finally reappeared, personally apologised to Chi Tong, and the two reconciled. The outcome was unknown, but after two days of training, they had another major quarrel. Chi Tong gritted his teeth and searched all over the mountains, but Luo Yin seemed to have disappeared completely without a trace.

It was this way until the middle of the twelfth lunar month, then Fan Xi clutched a pair of ice clogs and presented them to Su Yang.

“Look at this.” Fan Xi handed a pair of wooden clogs to Su Yang and said proudly, “You’ve never seen these before, huh?”

Su Yang reached out and took the clogs that Fan Xi handed him. His expression immediately became extremely animated as he turned them over.

There was only one horizontal strip under this clog. The sides of the strip had been sharpened into an edge, which had then been covered with polished iron—it turned out to be a pair of ice skates!

Seeing that Su Yang was in awe, Fan Xi laughed: “…These are ice clogs. Put them on, and you can walk, run as if you are flying on the ice. Wait until we reach the Jade Mirror Pond, then I’ll teach you how to use them.”

Su Yang smiled and said to himself, Back when I could already skate marvellously, I’m guessing you hadn’t even been written about yet!

It had been ages since he’d previously visited an ice rink, and the last time he went was together with his classmates during high school. Now that he thought about it, he was rather itching to test his skills. Although he didn’t know many tricks, he still could skate backwards. Now that his body had been trained in martial arts, maybe he could try performing those difficult moves he couldn’t execute before.

As he contemplated this, Su Yang immediately began to look forward to this trip to Jade Mirror Pond.

Yeee? You actually made ice clogs!”

All of a sudden, Chi Tong, who had been sulking by the side leaned in and picked up a wooden clog: “Jade Mirror Pond freezes year after year; why didn’t I think that there could be such a way to play on it?!”

After speaking, Chi Tung gave the table a smack and decided give up looking for that confused Luo Yin. Instead, they headed to Jade Mirror Pond together!

Perhaps he felt that it wasn’t lively enough with just the three of them, so Chi Tong turned around and hauled up Gu Feidi, Xu Yunzhan, and Pu Lingyun. Fan Xi’s originally planned ice games entertainment had thus become a group activity. He gnashed his teeth in contempt, but nothing could be changed. In the end, six of them got together and meandered down the mountain road to Jade Mirror Pond.

The layer of Jade Mirror Pond was frozen solid and very flat, just like its name, resembling a mirrored surface polished from a clear blue jade stone.

An ice waterfall cascaded from the mountain wall by the side of the pond, almost entirely suspended because of the subsidence of the cliff wall. The waterfall wasn’t wide, but it had a height of twenty-four to twenty-seven feet. Originally majestic and breathtaking, it had been frozen into ice, gleaming with a bright white colour. The base of the waterfall had merged with the ice layer of the pond. There were a few thin ice shards at the bottom, reflecting the sunlight as the rays glinted off their sharp points.

Su Yang stared at this ice waterfall and clicked his tongue in wonder.

“I thought we couldn’t play without ice clogs, but I didn’t expect this ice waterfall to freeze extremely well!” Pu Lingyun excitedly said, “How about we have a competition to scale this ice waterfall?”

Climbing an ice waterfall was extremely dangerous, but all the youngsters in attendance possessed light footwork skills. An ice waterfall of twenty-four or twenty-seven feet was not a hazard to them. They only needed to hold a simple dagger or a cluster of arrows and could easily use the support to climb this ice waterfall.

Hearing Pu Lingyun’s suggestion, the group of young males naturally agreed.

Fan Xi had only made two pairs of ice clogs; one pair had been snatched up by Chi Tong, another pair had been given to Su Yang, and he’d said that he would teach him ice games.

Su Yang smiled, tied the ice clogs to his feet, and fastened them firmly. After two leaps with his Prized Flower Steps, he jumped onto the frozen surface of Jade Mirror Pond.

He had an elegant posture, his legs furling back and forth, drawing a full arc on the ice, like a dancing swan flying swiftly towards the direction of the ice waterfall.

Chi Tong was momentarily dumbstruck by Su Yang’s form and sighed, “Little Beauty Su is actually so skilled!”

Fan Xi was also surprised: “He knows how to play on the ice! I thought he was brought up in the Wasteland and had no chance to see ice and snow…”

Hearing both their praises, Gu Feidi and Xu Yunzhan’s eyes also fell on Su Yang’s figure.

Su Yang clasped his hands behind his back and skated at full speed, his clothes and sleeves fluttering.

He first skated around Jade Mirror Pond twice, then reversed and skated backwards. He turned his head to look at Gu Feidi and the others, who were standing on the shore with amazement on their faces.

Seeing everyone’s eyes focused on him, Su Yang’s long-dormant exhibitionist personality finally surged out.

He raised the corners of his mouth and dazzled the crowd with a bright smile, then mobilised his internal strength to perform a few dance-stretch moves on the ice, and finally drew a high-curved arc before returning to the shore.

Su Yang raised his eyebrows, gave a broad smile, and cast a provocative look at Gu Feidi, then turned to Fan Xi and asked, “What do you think?”

Fan Xi was very conscious of his lackey personality and immediately gushed in admiration: “Young Saint is so skilled and at ease on the ice. You’ve already reached the pinnacle of ice games, the rest of us won’t be able to catch up!”

The author has something to say: 

Su Yang: Gradually… let it go. jpg



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