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~
Gu Feidi was abruptly startled: “Why?”
Gu Ruohai said, “Recently, the martial arts circles have been in constant turmoil. Eluo Ghost Tent’s spies have been discovered in Tongyun Temple and Wujiangmen. You’re still young; don’t get involved in this dispute; just practice martial arts calmly in the Pavilion.”
“But Father,” Gu Feidi said anxiously, “Su Yang introduced the Gu worm into his body to save me. For the sake of sentiment and reason, I shouldn’t be abandoning him…”
Gu Ruohai regarded his son’s apprehensive expression, paused for a moment, and asked, “For the sake of sentiment and reason?”
Gu Feidi looked down: “…The sentiment of being classmates, the reason is to repay the favour.”
“You and Su Yang truly harbour only classmates’ sentiment towards each other?” Gu Ruohai asked in a deep voice.
The stresses on his tone fell on the second half of the sentence, bringing with it obvious questioning, Gu Feidi couldn’t help but panic.
He clenched his fists, wiped his sweating palms onto his shirt, swallowed, and replied: “Classmates and… the affection of intimate friends who’ve fought side by side. That time I was in Lesser Jade House’s Jade Mirror Pond… and also the matter of him blocking the sword for me in the Wasteland; Father should have already heard of them.”
After Gu Feidi finished speaking, he finally had the courage to raise his eyes and look Gu Ruohai in the face: “So he and I should be regarded as friends whom we can trust with our lives.”
Gu Ruohai stared fixedly at Gu Feidi’s eyes. After a moment, he said: “You value him.”
Gu Feidi: “He’s a brother I trust with my life—of course I value him.”
Gu Ruohai slowly exhaled and raised his hand to pat Gu Feidi’s shoulder. “You’ve grown up…”
Without waiting for Gu Feidi to say anything, he continued, “I’m not a good father, nor a good husband. When you were younger, there was a long period of time that I didn’t care about both you and your mother.”
Seeing that his father appeared upset, Gu Feidi consoled: “How can you say such things? Although you were strict, you taught me martial arts and instructed me to study and practice calligraphy every day. How can you say that you never cared?”
Gu Ruohai smiled and said, “In any case, you’ve been a good son since you were a child; sensible, courteous and also diligent. You’re strict and self-disciplined. The entire Pavilion praises you without exception. They say that my Tengyun Pavilion has a responsible and trustworthy Young Pavilion Master, succession is promising…”
Gu Feidi stood rooted to the spot, unable to say anything.
He absentmindedly looked at his father, who was already sporting white hair at his temples, and his fingers by his side trembled uncontrollably.
“Although Su Yang comes from the Devil Sect, you and him entered Lesser Jade House at the same time and have some friendly relations, so there’s actually nothing wrong with it.” Gu Ruohai continued, “Back then, I was also…… friends with the Devil Sect Leader. We travelled the Jianghu together when we were younger.”
As he spoke, he gave a faint sigh and looked straight at Gu Feidi: “But you have to understand that sometimes, many things don’t develop in the direction you expect. I do not wish for my son to experience the same pain that I suffered last time.”
Gu Feidi was taken aback: “…Pain?”
Gu Ruohai smiled: “It’s best not to mention past events. You need to know that the people from the Devil Sect are unscrupulous, ignore common customs and human sentiments. They behave completely according to their own wishes. Now he treats you well and is willing to risk his life to block a sword for you, but it doesn’t mean that he won’t abandon you for others in the future.”
He hesitated for a moment before speaking sincerely and earnestly: “You‘ve affection for him, but you must remember to protect yourself.”
With those words, Gu Feidi became stunned then and there.
He bore a frantic expression; he grabbed the corners of his clothes, and his throat trembled for a long time before calling out in a low voice, “…Father?”
“Do you like him?” Gu Ruohai gave a wry smile; although it was a question, the tone in it was certain.
Gu Feidi was tongue-tied for a long time, then bit his lip and avoided looking directly at Gu Ruohai.
He tried to prevaricate: “He and I are both men… How—how can I like him?”
Gu Ruohai sighed and didn’t pursue this topic.
“Go back quietly to your Feiniao House. As for the matter of discreetly sending Su Yang to southwest Snow Mountain, I shall arrange for Feng Lin to attend to it.” He said calmly, “Ling Yun came back some time ago and caused a big fuss. I punished her by making her ponder her mistakes in seclusion at Xieyun House. You can go and have a talk with her.”
Gu Feidi frowned slightly: “Why did Father punish xiao shimei?”
Gu Ruohai asked in turn, “You truly don’t know?”
“Is… is it because of Fan Xi?” Gu Feidi said, “Just because he comes from the Qinglian Sect, Father deems him a poor match for our Tengyun Pavilion, so you disagree of xiao shimei’s involvement with him?”
Gu Ruohai asked again, “When did your father have such opinions on family status?”
Gu Feidi clenched his fists and forced himself to calm down.
Gu Ruohai sighed: “I punished her because she thoughtlessly allowed herself to be instigated by a man to elope with him. Aside from the dangers women face outside because of elopement, they will also encounter censures, which are more severe for women than they are for men. Whether it’s the Qinglian Sect or the Devil Sect, it’s not their background that worries me, do you understand?”
Seeing Gu Feidi still frowning, he said helplessly, “No matter, when you become a father in the future, you’ll naturally understand.”
Gu Feidi opened his mouth as if he wanted to say something, but finally closed it and uttered nothing.
“Go back and rest.” Gu Ruohai said, “I’ve asked them to prepare red bean cake and sweet-scented osmanthus glutinous rice. Don’t eat so much; there’s river fish for dinner.”
“Father…” Gu Feidi called out in a low voice, “…There’s one more thing.”
“When I was in the Devil Sect, I met with the Devil Sect’s leader.” Gu Feidi said, reaching to the inside of his lapel for the letter and handing it over, “He requested for me to give this letter to Father.”
Gu Ruohai’s gaze fell onto the handwriting on the letter and then slowly moved to the cluster of green bamboos at the signature portion.
For a long, long time, there was no movement.
Gu Feidi glanced up suspiciously, but couldn’t discern any clues from his father’s face.
It wasn’t until a night crow suddenly cawed from outside the window that Gu Ruohai recovered and reached out to take the letter from Gu Feidi’s hand.
“You can go back first,” he said.
Gu Feidi nodded, cupped his fists, and bowed, slowly exiting Gu Ruohai’s room.
Before he left the room, he looked back and saw that the imposing, broad-shouldered figure was still standing motionless in the hall.
Su Yang didn’t sleep well that night; his heart was being weighed down by an unprovoked restlessness, and he was awakened by the slightest noise around him.
As the sky brightened, his expression was one of complete exhaustion. He turned over and got out of bed, deciding not to sleep for the time being and instead wait for noon to make up for the lost sleep.
When Mei Shisan brought breakfast, Fan Xi finally regained consciousness.
He hugged the quilt and stared at Su Yang with a muddled expression. It took a long time for him to react, and he leapt up from the couch.
“You actually came to Central Plains!” Fan Xi said in astonishment.
When he noticed the Tengyun Pavilion attire worn by Su Yang, his eyes widened: “Gu Feidi took you back to Tengyun Pavilion already?”
Su Yang said, “No, he went home to deliver a letter and told me to wait for him here. We’ll then head to the southwest together. As for you, looks like the matter with Pu Lingyun isn’t going to be easy to solve?”
Fan Xi gave a bitter smile: “Not only is it not easy to solve, I don’t know what I should do right now. Ling’er had also returned to Tengyun Pavilion to pass a message, but was immediately punished by Leader Gu to ponder her mistakes in seclusion, and I don’t know if she had been scolded. I’ve been requesting to see Leader Gu, but have been refused entrance…”
“Leader Gu doesn’t consent to your relationship?” Su Yang was a little worried.
“Likely.” Fan Xi said dejectedly, “After all, the Qinglian Sect is just a minor sect. To make it sound a bit better, you can say we’re both righteous and evil. To make it sound bad,… ho, the Jianghu calls us fence-sitters. You should’ve also heard about it before.”
Fan Qi was dissatisfied when he heard this: “Er Ge, how can you extinguish your own fire?! Now that the Da Ge* has started to assist Father in running his affairs, it’ll get better and better!”
(*TN: da = big, ge = brother)
Fan Xi sneered: “Da Ge? Since when are there mutually beneficial acts in this Jianghu? He thought that my Qinglian Sect could be like a gold ingot that everyone would like…”
Su Yang was in no mood to listen to Qinglian Sect’s matters. Right now, he was even more worried about Gu Feidi.
If the Leader Gu was incapable of even accepting Qinglian Sect, then he—the Devil Sect’s Young Saint… and a man to boot—how could he possibly obtain his approval and have a ‘happy ever after’ with Gu Feidi?
He knew that even in modern times, when the family was at this critical juncture, this kind of situation would also be very difficult for them. What’s more, the setting here was in ancient times, where the continuation of the family line was an important affair. The Devil Sect Leader’s indulgence before had made him too lax, and he hadn’t noticed that he and Gu Feidi had actually reached a point of no return.
——And he’d actually resolved not to enter Tengyun Pavilion; completely throwing all the pressure onto Gu Feidi.
“Hey! Wakey-wakey!” Fan Xi suddenly shouted.
Su Yang woke up from his train of thought and tried to console himself: It’s okay, Gu Feidi is going home this time just to deliver a letter, not to immediately confess anything to Leader Gu, so you shouldn’t need to worry… right?
“Don’t talk anymore.” He twitched his mouth. “First, eat breakfast. What’s your plan for later?”
They sat down at the dining table, and Fan Xi curled his lips: “I’ve to go back to where I’m staying to tidy up and then head over to Tengyun Pavilion to hand over the calling card. I still have to go to work in the afternoon.”
Su Yang was surprised: “Go to work?”
Fan Xi said: “If not? I’ve been staying in Lanyang for twenty-something days, and the travelling expenses I’ve brought with me have all been spent long ago. If I don’t work, should I wait and wander around, begging on the streets?”
Su Yang only reacted to the mention of travelling expenses. He never seemed to concern himself about expenditures, so he immediately turned to look at Mei Shisan.
Mei Shisan said, “Young Saint, don’t worry. We have sufficient funds, and we have silver deposits in the Central Plains draught bank, which can be accessed at any time with your official seal.”
Fan Xi tittered lightly and said with a smile, “Young Saint, you’re truly a person of eminence; I’m guessing you’ve never had to worry about money.”
Fan Qi was bewildered : “Ak… Young Saint?”
Fan Xi: “Ng? Why? Don’t you know each other? Don’t you know that he is the Devil Sect’s Young Saint, Su Yang?”
Fan Qi: !!!
Fan Xi: “…Are you stupid! You don’t know him, yet he lets you bring me to his room, so you actually brought me?! What if he chopped me up and threw me into the river?”
Fan Qi refused to concede: “I don’t know him, but I know his sister aaa!”
Fan Xi was infuriated: “Since when did the Devil Sect’s Young Saint have sisters?!”
Fan Qi instantly became confused and turned to ask Su Yang: “But I truly saw a lady that day who looked exactly like you…”
As he spoke, his voice became lower and lower, but his mouth grew bigger and bigger, as if he’d discovered something tremendous.
Fan Xi was taken aback, looked suspiciously at Su Yang, and asked rather uncertainly, “Don’t tell me you… disguised…”
Su Yang didn’t mind in the least: “Mmm, disguised myself as a woman.”
Fan Xi raised his eyebrows with great interest.
Fan Qi couldn’t calm down: “Wha—what? What? That lady… that lady was you?!”
Ignoring Fan Qi who was in the process of having his view of the world crumble to bits, Su Yang said to Fan Xi, “If you need to, I can lend you some money first.”
As for whether it was necessary for him to repay, it was only a matter if he said so.
Fan Xi refused: “No, if I can take root in this Lanyang City on my own, it would be more just and courageous when I go to Tengyun Pavilion to send a calling card every day. Ling’er grew up in Tengyun Pavilion and has been living there worry-free since childhood. I won’t tolerate it if she has to suffer hardship being together with me.”
Su Yang raised his hand and patted Fan Xi’s shoulder: “You speak beautifully now; why did you get drunk like that yesterday? I thought you’d became a drunkard because of the troubles in your love life.”
Fan Xi grinned: “I was in a bad mood yesterday and had some money on hand, so I drank a few more cups. Who’d have known that I’d run into you.”
As he spoke, he rubbed his chin and stared at Su Yang for a long time: “It’s you, letting the Feidi go back to Tengyun Pavilion; why aren’t you worried at all? If Leader Gu knows of the business between the two of you, I’m afraid it’ll be even more difficult… “
Su Yang was taken aback and said in surprise, “Why are you…”
Fan Xi blinked at him and said, “At any rate, I’m also a person with experience. Previously in the Wasteland, the two of you were so intimate when you rode the white horse together. I didn’t notice it at first, but after a little bit of diligent observation, I could naturally discern it.”
After a pause, he whispered: “You and him are both men and are opposites of righteous and evil. If you and he are not of the same heart…… Young Saint, the world will never stand on your side.”
Su Yang smiled and said, “Of course he and I are of the same heart.”