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~
Yuqiong Divine Doctor’s courtyard was built on the mountainside and originally had white walls and black tiles. Its architectural style was inclined toward Lesser Jade House’s, but because it was mostly covered in snow, it appeared spotlessly white everywhere.
This was clearly the summit of Snow Mountain. A distant portion of the courtyard was leaning against the mountain cliff, but a few clusters of emerald canopies could be seen. It wasn’t clear what method was used to decorate the severely cold mountain top with a little springtime.
Su Yang lowered himself down from Gu Feidi’s back and tidied his luggage and clothing. Both of them walked side by side to the front and knocked on the courtyard gate.
Not long after, a youth who resembled a young disciple opened the courtyard gate and asked, “Who has come?”
Su Yang wasn’t very capable in handling this type of conversation, so Gu Feidi led him to cup his fists and greet, “The son of an old friend has come to visit.” After speaking, he gestured for Su Yang to hand over the flower hairpin.
“This is a token entrusted by a family elder. I would appreciate it if you could present it to Divine Doctor Luo.”
The disciple who was responsible for guarding the entrance bore a hesitant expression when he received the hairpin. He eyed Su Yang and Gu Feidi up and down a few times and said, “Wait here first, both of you.”
After that, he turned back to the courtyard and flipped the gate closed with the back of his hand.
Su Yang became a little tense just then.
He couldn’t tell the reason for the nervousness, but he was perturbed and a little restless.
Gu Feidi held Su Yang’s hand and gave it a light squeeze. Su Yang turned his head to look and saw that Gu Feidi’s gaze was steadfast. He was giving him a look of encouragement.
Both his eyes seemed like pieces of stardust had dropped into obsidian, bringing with them a soothing energy.
“Don’t be afraid.” Gu Feidi said, “No matter what happens, I’ll accompany you.”
Su Yang held his hand tighter and revealed a trace of a smile: “Mmm, I know.”
About an hour later, the gate of the small courtyard was silently pushed open again.
It was the young disciple who stood on the inside of the gate. He bowed to Su Yang and Gu Feidi and said, “Apologies, young heroes. Master said that the rules he set state that he does not cure anyone from the Jianghu, even if they are the sons of old friends. Kindly leave and seek another master.”
Su Yang and Gu Feidi exchanged a look, and Gu Feidi bowed and said, “This little brother, my family elder meant that this ailment can only be cured by Divine Doctor Luo. This is extremely life-threatening. Appreciate if you could convey it on our behalf.”
It was inappropriate for them to disclose the matter of the blood Gu to these junior disciples. There were few people that they could speak to frankly on the matter, and their ability to trust had been greatly reduced.
As expected, when the disciple heard the words, he looked down and revealed a courteous but utterly dismissive smile: “Apologies, young heroes. Master said he’s unwilling to see you. Thus, he will not see you.”
Neither Gu Feidi nor Su Yang had much experience in begging others for help. For a while, they were unsure of what to do after being turned down twice like this.
The doorkeeper disciple’s disposition was rather good. Seeing that they were helpless and at a loss, he softened his tone and said, “Despite being known as the Divine Doctor, there actually are many good doctors in the village at the foot of the mountain who’ve received Master’s guidance. Since you have crossed the line with Master, it’s better that you leave earlier and seek treatment from a famous doctor, so as not to hinder the patient’s condition.”
Gu Feidi opened his mouth, wanting to contend again, but was unexpectedly interrupted by a voice from the courtyard.
“Why should you talk so much with them? Do you know who that person is?” The voice carried a mocking tone. Although the words were blunt, there was no animosity: “The Devil Sect’s Young Saint who is rumoured to regard human life as a trifle, has in fact an instance where he begs others to save his life?”
When this voice rang out, it was still some distance from the courtyard gate and was completely initiated by internal force. By the time it was done speaking, it was fairly near.
Just then, a middle-aged man stepped out of the courtyard gate. His gaze fell upon Su Yang. It was as if his imposing manner of boundless substance and oppressive internal force completely crushed Su Yang down, forcing him to involuntarily take a step back. He held his hand to his chest and resisted the downward pressure not to sink to knees there and then.
Gu Feidi was shocked and stepped in front to block Su Yang’s body. He activated his internal strength and faced the middle-aged martial artist.
The doorkeeper disciple didn’t seem to notice the surreptitious scrutiny among the three and cupped his fists, “Uncle Qin.”
Qin Jianyue’s gaze fell on Gu Feidi, and he raised his eyebrows with interest. He turned to the disciple and said, “Leave it to me. You can go in first.”
The disciple took the order and withdrew.
Qin Jianyue leaned on the stone column of the courtyard gate. He looked at Gu Feidi and raised the corners of his mouth: “Tengyun Pavilion… Young Pavilion Master?”
Gu Feidi had already speculated that he would be recognised when he had experienced the distinctions of this man’s terrifyingly profound martial arts skills. He cupped his fists and saluted: “Gu Feidi greets this Elder.”
Su Yang also followed his way of saluting, then he frowned slightly and coughed. He suppressed the bloody blob in his mouth.
Qin Jianyue looked at both their appearances and smiled. He released a sigh and murmured, “…They’ve come together again.”
These words had no beginning or end. Neither Su Yang nor Gu Feidi understood it.
Qin Jianyue didn’t need them to understand anything. He changed the subject and said, “Luo Yu will not cure Su Yang. That flower hairpin is a relic of his old acquaintance, and it’s inappropriate for him to return it. Therefore, he’s asked me to escort both of you down the mountain and to convey his apologies. Young masters, please.”
Seeing that things hadn’t taken a favourable turn, Gu Feidi bit his lower lip and approached, saying, “Elder, wait a moment.”
He turned to Su Yang to hand over the jade pendant Gu Ruohai had left to him. He respectfully yielded it and said, “Our family elder has also entrusted this item. Kindly… deliver it to the Divine Doctor.”
Qin Jianyue’s expression suddenly became serious when he caught sight of the jade pendant. He’d been leaning against the stone column and immediately straightened.
His gaze shifted from the jade pendant to Gu Feidi’s eyes and he asked, “Was this really entrusted to you by the head of your family?”
Gu Feidi was trembling beneath his gaze, but he still didn’t evade and looked directly back at him: “Yes. It was indeed personally entrusted by my family elder.”
Qin Jianyue was silent for a long time before he stretched out his hand to take the jade pendant away. He turned to enter the gate and left with an indifferent “Wait.”
In the warm study room, Luo Yu was holding the flower hairpin and lost in his thoughts.
The sound of Qin Jianyue pushing open the door startled him, and the flower hairpin plonked on the table. He hastily picked it up and examined it carefully for any damage.
“You really don’t want to see Su Yang?” Qin Jianyue casually sat at the corner of the table and looked down at Luo Yu, who was rarely so engrossed.
Luo Yu didn’t say anything. Qin Jianyue smiled and continued: “I saw him just now, and I can confirm that his biological mother ought to be Jin’er—no mistake. Although he’s Su Huaizhu’s son, he’s also your—”
“He’s not anyone of mine.” Luo Yu threw an impassive look at Qin Jianyue and said, “I understood Jin’er’s temperament. Although there were many uncertainties about matters back then, the one that Jin’er liked wasn’t Su Huaizhu. She was forcibly abducted to the Devil Sect by Su Huaizhu and based on her character, she would never willingly bear a child for him.”
As he spoke, he stared at the flower hairpin in his hand and said softly, “What’s more, Jin’er’s already gone, and looking at the timeline, I surmise that it should’ve been soon after giving birth to Su Yang. Jin’er likely never hoped for this child to be born, so why should I save him now?”
Qin Jianyue smiled and said, “For someone who heals people, your heart is really stiff and cold.”
Luo Yu scoffed: “I’ve never bragged about being a healer. I study herbal medicine and healing arts as a matter of interest. I descend the mountain to practice medicine as a means of survival… As for practicing medicine to help the world, if I truly wanted to help the world, why would I continue to hide on this Yuqiong Peak?”
Qin Jianyue laughed again. “You don’t want to practice medicine to help the world, but the promise you’ve undertaken should be achievable, right?”
This was a strange question, and Luo Yu raised his eyes to Qin Jianyue in confusion: “What promise?”
Qin Jianyue put the jade pendant in his hand on the table and said with a smile: “Back then, Gu Ruohai helped you avoid being hunted by the Ghost Tent King and concealed your whereabouts. You made him a promise, remember?”
Luo Yu’s eyes fell on the jade pendant, he slowly clenched his fists and his teeth.
All of a sudden, he lost his patience and stood up, slamming his palm angrily onto the table: “That Su Huaizhu is so esteemed that he was able to make Hai Ge* use this jade pendant for Su Yang?!”
(*TN: Hai = his way of addressing Gu Ruohai, Ge = Elder brother.)
Qin Jianyue hurriedly came forward to assuage him: “Don’t be angry. Since Su Yang was able to get this jade pendant, Gu Ruohai must’ve given it to him personally.”
“It’s because of that that I’m angry!” Luo Yu couldn’t hold back his rage. “Back then in Lesser Jade House, Hai Ge and he were like glue and had a sincere affection. Many envied him, and even you know this. But what happened later? For the sake of travelling the Jianghu with him, Hai Ge didn’t hesitate to defy his father, rebel, and flee from home… but in the end, he was betrayed in exchange!”
Both of them knew of the ‘he’ that he was talking about.
The more Luo Yu said, the more furious he became. He gritted his teeth and said: “Now that his son is ill, he still had to seek out Hai Ge for the jade pendant token. It’s simply unreasonable! If it were me, I’d definitely capture Su Yang over here, force him to admit his guilt, and apologise. If he doesn’t come, then let the son pay for his father’s debts!”
Qin Jianyue could help laughing as he stretched out to pat Luo Yu’s shoulder, “You. As long as it has nothing to do with practicing medicine, your temper is still so impetuous. Back then, I knew that you had a good relationship with them and, all the more, couldn’t accept Su Huaizhu’s treachery. But… after all, it’s an old grudge. What happened between them and Jin’er has been deliberately kept as a closely guarded secret by Su Huaizhu.”
He let out a sigh as he spoke: “You really shouldn’t take out your anger on the innocent younger generation because of your old grudge with Su Huaizhu.”
“Why do you keep insisting for me to see him?” Luo Yu cast Qin Jianyue a sidelong glance and said, “You seldom contradict me like this.”
Qin Jianyue coaxed: “No matter what, Su Yang is your nephew in the end. Blood is thicker than water. I don’t want you to regret in the future… that you didn’t cure Jin’er’s sole remaining bloodline.”
Luo Yu fell silent.
Qin Jianyue said, “Earlier, I used internal strength to exert pressure on Su Yang. He was struggling to respond to it, unlike how someone from Lesser Jade House should be able to. Furthermore, according to my assessment, he may have suffered a serious internal injury. You’re… truly unwilling to save him?”
There was another long silence. Luo Yu sat back in the chair behind the desk and weakly rested his forehead on his hand. “I’ll reconsider it… return this jade pendant. I don’t want my promise to Hai Ge to be used on unrelated people.”
Qin Jianyue picked up the jade pendant, muttered to himself for a moment, and said, “In fact, perhaps they can’t be considered ‘unrelated’.”
Luo Yu was unconvinced: “Why’s that?”
Qin Jianyue said: “Su Yang is being accompanied by Gu Ruohai’s son, Gu Feidi, to seek medical treatment. I observed that their expressions and mannerisms were rather intimate, just like ‘them’ those days in Lesser Jade House… Su Huaizhu and Gu Ruohai.”
“Tsk.” Luo Yu frowned irritably, “It wasn’t enough that Su Huaizhu betrayed Hai Ge; he even incited his son to hurt Hai Ge’s son?!”
Qin Jianyue was helpless: “Ah Yu*——”
(*TN: Adding the “Ah” before a person’s name or part of the name is an informal way of address; usually if you’re very close/ intimate with the person)
Luo Yu unhappily grabbed at his hair and said, “You go return the jade pendant first and I’ll reconsider it… reconsider it…”
Qin Jianyue couldn’t say anything more, so he patted Luo Yu on the shoulder again and walked out of the study with the jade pendant.
Back outside the courtyard, after having waited for such a long time, Su Yang and Gu Feidi didn’t expect that the answer they received would once again be ‘unwilling to see’.
When Qin Jianyue returned the jade pendant, his gaze swept over Su Yang’s and Gu Feidi’s clasped hands as well as Su Yang’s eyes.
Su Yang didn’t dare to look directly at the elder and immediately lowered his eyelashes nervously. Gu Feidi squeezed his hand. Su Yang tightened his fingers, and the space between his brows relaxed slightly.
Qin Jianyue smiled and said, “You’re completely different from what I’d imagined.”
Su Yang didn’t know what to reply, so he turned to Gu Feidi.
Gu Feidi said, “The world has many misunderstandings about him. Su Yang, he’s… not actually like what they say in the rumours of the Jianghu.”
Qin Jianyue heard this and raised his eyebrows at Gu Feidi, “I’ve only heard what’s been said outside.”
Seeing that the other party was more relaxed, Gu Feidi asked, “What should we do before we’re able to meet Divine Doctor Luo? We would appreciate it if Elder can give some advice.”
Qin Jianyue said: “I personally feel that he’s already wavering, but there’s still a small unresolved resentment. He was old friends with both your elders. If you let him witness your sincerity… and affection, maybe he’d soften his stance a bit for the sake of old times.”
Gu Feidi and Su Yang glanced at each other and bowed to Qin Jianyue, saying, “Thank you, Elder.”
After the words fell, Gu Feidi straightened his garments and knelt down on the cold stone slab in front of the courtyard in a calm and solemn manner.