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 and Gu Feidi were wholly absorbed in eliminating the Gu, and they didn’t pay attention to anything else at all. In addition, Luo Yu intentionally concealed it, and both of them were completely kept in the dark.
Qin Jianyue made a round trip from Yuqiong Peak to Tengyun Pavilion and back all by himself, but didn’t get to meet with Gu Ruohai. In the end, he only received news that the latter had gone out on a long journey.
During this period, in order to fine-tune Su Yang’s body to its optimum condition before eliminating the Gu, Luo Yu not only continued to give Su Yang acupuncture every other day, but also added herbal medicines that needed to be decocted and a medicated bath every night.
This was the first time in his life that Su Yang had come into contact with herbal decoctions. He had his first mouthful, couldn’t bear it, and spit it all out.
“This medicine is practically inhuman, okay?” Su Yang wrinkled his nose and rejected it. “Can’t it be made into pills? It’s better to just swallow them whole. Who can stand drinking a decoction like this?”
Luo Yu put the medicine bowl down on the table and paused. He then smiled sarcastically and said: “These few days, I’ve been tending to your health and haven’t said one harsh word to you. You still want to be served. Make pills? Who has the time to grind medicine powder and roll them into pills for you?”
Su Yang flattened his mouth and threw a glance at Gu Feidi.
Gu Feidi immediately understood: “If you need……”
“No need.” Luo Yu rolled his eyes and said leisurely, “Anyone else can take the medicine in pill form, but not him. There are a few herbs in it that need to be decocted with water. It’s too strong to consume in powder form, which may trigger his internal strength’s resistance to the worm poison and instead, intensify the symptoms.”
Hearing this, Gu Feidi silently shut his mouth.
Luo Yu snorted and looked at Su Yang with disdain: “How old is he, he’s not a young child. Kicking up such a fuss over drinking some medicine. Gu Feidi, watch him and make sure he drinks it all. If he doesn’t drink it, give him mouth-to-mouth and force it down his throat.”
He raised his eyebrows and warned again: “Oh, that’s right. This medicine has peculiar properties. After drinking, you mustn’t consume sweetmeats, maltose, or water for two hours. Otherwise, the effect will fall short. So when it comes time to eliminate the Gu, then you’ll know what it’s like to suffer.”
After he finished speaking, he turned around and left. It wasn’t known if it was a joke or not.
Su Yang eyed the bowl of black decoction. Internally, he was truly… struggling.
He wasn’t actually a pampered person, and he’d never intentionally acted like a pretentious, spoiled child. However, he’d just sipped a mouthful from the bowl of medicine in front of him, and he absolutely didn’t want to touch it ever again.
It wasn’t just the bitterness. After all, he was also someone who was used to drinking pure black coffee. The problem was that this medicine wasn’t just bitter; it was also a mixture of all kinds of bizarre flavours… If he definitely had to describe it, he felt that drinking this bowl of medicine was tantamount to a lingering death for his taste buds.
Besides, as per the doctor’s instructions, he couldn’t consume sweet things after drinking the medicine and he couldn’t even swallow his saliva to dilute the taste in his throat.
Su Yang simply had nothing left to live for.
Seeing his resistance, Gu Feidi picked up the bowl of medicine and sat down beside Su Yang. “Good medicine is bitter. Since it’s for eliminating the Gu, prepare yourself. No matter what, you still need to drink the medicine.”
Su Yang struggled. In that instance, he took the bowl of medicine from Gu Feidi’s hand. When he tasted the strange flavour lingering in his mouth, he still couldn’t bring himself to drink it.
Gu Feidi smiled, “You don’t really need me to feed you the medicine using mouth-to-mouth, do you?”
Su Yang raised his eyebrows, handed over the bowl of medicine he was holding, and said, “For a start, don’t tell me whether you want to feed me or not. Do you want to have a taste first?”
Gu Feidi chuckled lightly. He took the proffered bowl of medicine, bowed his head, and took a sip of the decoction.
In the next moment, his initially calm and collected countenance completely faded, and the expression on his face suddenly became…… wonderful.
With great effort, Gu Feidi swallowed the liquid medicine and released a light cough. “This medicine… is truly difficult to accept.”
Su Yang tried to stifle a laugh.
Gu Feidi’s gaze remained on his face for a while, and he couldn’t help smiling. He shook his head, picked up the bowl of medicine, and moved it towards his own mouth.
Su Yang quickly stretched out his hand to stop him and sighed in exaggeration: “Just give it to me…… instead of you feeding me this kind of unnatural medicine mouth-to-mouth, I might as well gulp it down all at once.”
With that said, he snatched the bowl of medicine back from Gu Feidi and eyed the pitch-black liquid inside. He stared death unflinchingly in the face, took a deep breath, held his nose shut, and downed it all.
Casting aside the medicine bowl, Su Yang contorted his face and attempted to quell the indescribable taste in his mouth by sucking in a few breaths through his teeth.
Gu Feidi curled his hand around Su Yang’s neck and stroked it for a while. Then, he tugged him close and kissed his still-bitter lips. Gu Feidi swirled his tongue around in Su Yang’s mouth. The tip of his tongue gently touched the roof of his mouth. Soon after, he sucked deeply and licked Su Yang’s lips again.
He chuckled lightly, his breaths carrying with it the bitterness of the medicinal herbs: “Since you can’t eat sweetmeats, then you’ll have to eat something that doesn’t have to enter your stomach……”
As his voice fell, he closed his eyes and kissed him again.
After an extended kiss, Su Yang felt lightheaded and reclined onto a pillow. His dazed eyes stared at Gu Feidi.
The corners of Gu Feidi’s mouth curled up, and he asked, “Is it sweet?”
Su Yang: ……
This person is really becoming increasingly shameless and conceited. I wonder who he learned it from.
Gu Feidi moved a bit closer. He lowered his voice and asked again, “Is it not sweet?”
Su Yang was badgered by him until he helplessly nodded with a smile. He mumbled, “Alright—it’s sweet, it’s sweet. You’re the sweetest……”
Gu Feidi softly caressed Su Yang’s forehead and smiled. “From now on, you must obediently drink the medicine, so that you can quickly get well.”
Su Yang compliantly closed his eyes and released a very light breath: “……Alright.”
Having completed the course of acupunctures and medicines, as well as ten days of convalescence, Luo Yu took Su Yang’s pulse and, at last, set a date for the Gu elimination.
Zi period* was the best time to draw out the blood Gu.
(*TN: 11 p.m. to 1 a.m.)
That day coincided with the new moon phase of the thirtieth of the ninth month and first of the tenth month. The illumination would be dim, which was perfect for extracting the blood Gu.
But because the realm would be shrouded in darkness at that time, the cold symptoms would be at their most severe, and the Cold Pond Ice Spirit in Su Yang’s body would be even harder to restrain.
Su Yang initially didn’t want Gu Feidi to witness the Gu extradition process, but the reason provided by Luo Yu was indisputable——Gu Feidi was the only person there who practiced masculine techniques. As such, he was the only person who could pull Su Yang back from the clutches of death once the Cold Pond Ice Spirit emerged.
As a result, Gu Feidi entered the hot spring together with Su Yang to assist in the Gu extradition. Luo Yu also went into the water, while Qin Jianyue stayed on the shore to protect the three of them.
“Su Yang, you once helped Gu Feidi extradite the blood Gu. Therefore, you should also know that in order to forcibly draw out the live blood Gu, you can only pass it through the upper Yang tongue route.” Luo Yu said, “It’s the same principle if we want to completely draw out the live blood Gu in your body; merely that…… the use of some special items are required.”
Having said that, he held out a fist-sized, black porcelain bottle and said, “This is the paste needed to draw out the live blood Gu. The taste is rather strong, but you need to keep it in your mouth in order to lure the blood Gu into it and seal it.”
Su Yang took the porcelain bottle, opened the cap, and took a whiff of the contents. His face immediately changed, and he almost gagged.
“What’s this?!” He asked, wrinkling his nose.
“This is the Hundred Poison Paste used by Eluo Ghost Tent to cultivate the Gu. It is concocted from hundreds of poisonous insects and wild plants, and is the only thing that can lure Gu worms out of a person’s body.” Luo Yu said. He took out a small dagger and smiled. “However, the medicine needs to be fresh before it is used in order for it to be effective.”
As he spoke, he flipped the dagger and made a cut on his wrist. Dark, red blood instantly trickled into the porcelain bottle, diluting the paste to form a thick liquid.
“Nip the tip of your tongue, similar to when you extradited the poison Gu.” Luo Yu instructed Su Yang, “Then put the paste in your mouth, but don’t swallow it. Manoeuvre your inner strength to force the Gu worm out the tip of the tongue and into the Hundred Poison Paste.”
Su Yang nipped his tongue as directed, brought the spout of the bottle into his mouth, and subconsciously paused.
Luo Yu spurred him on: “Quickly, there’s blood in the medicine. Don’t waste time.”
Powerless, Su Yang summoned up his courage and poured the blood-mixed paste from the porcelain bottle into his mouth.
Immediately, an indescribable odour mixed with the stench of blood spread within his mouth and slammed straight up into his nose, making Su Yang feel a little groggy. He closed his mouth tight, reluctantly subduing the impulse to vomit out all the medicine inside, and raised his eyes to look at Luo Yu.
Luo Yu inhaled and said seriously: “Alright, now exercise the Half Withered Red technique together with your internal strength to prompt the poison Gu along the meridians to the tongue route.”
Su Yang did as instructed and manoeuvred his inner strength. Just as the Half Withered Red started circulating, the Cold Pond Ice Spirit in his body was promptly stimulated.
The chill abruptly surged, saturating into his blood and spreading throughout his limbs and bones. Even though he was immersed in the hot spring water, Su Yang still couldn’t help trembling.
Gu Feidi anxiously took a step forward to hold Su Yang in his arms, but was stopped by Luo Yu.
“Don’t disrupt him.” Luo Yu said, “He can only depend on himself to force the Gu worm out.”
Su Yang shut his eyes and felt the poison Gu gradually climbing along his meridians in his body. As a result of the extremely cold internal strength and the Cold Pond Ice Spirit’s effect, he didn’t sense any pain. Instead, it was replaced by the chill flooding out of his body.
The chill seemed to solidify into icicles, stabbing upwards along his spine and aggressively piercing his heart over and over again.
Su Yang’s consciousness began to obscure in degrees, and he could no longer perceive his surroundings. He only felt as if he was floating weightlessly in a zero-gravity, zero-temperature void. He couldn’t detect the muddy floor of the hot spring beneath his feet nor the hot spring water on his body.
All he could feel was the Half Withered Red still circulating in his body and the icy stings carried by the poison Gu scrambling along his meridians.
It wasn’t until the blood Gu reached the tip of his tongue and began to penetrate out from his blood vessel, that a cutting pain assailed him for the first time.
The pain also caused Su Yang’s head to clear somewhat. He opened his eyes a little, peered through the black splotches that had clustered before him, and caught sight of the porcelain bottle that Luo Yu was holding up in front of him.
Once the Gu worm had been lured into the Hundred Poison Paste, he had to spit it back into the porcelain bottle together with the paste as fast as he could. Therefore… he couldn’t pass out now.
Su Yang’s figure wavered a little, and he almost fell into the water.
Gu Feidi instinctively moved in to support him but was shocked by the bone-biting chill emanating from Su Yang’s body.
He looked at Luo Yu in panic. Luo Yu was also more or less able to speculate his intention and said in a deep voice, “You mustn’t assist him with your internal strength. You’ll only harm him if you act rashly.”
Gu Feidi had no choice but to grit his teeth and tighten his hold on Su Yang’s shoulders. He moved behind Su Yang, pulled him into his arms, and steadied him. He felt Su Yang’s body shivering from the pain and cold, and had to resist the urge to hug him tighter. He closed his eyes and gently pressed his forehead against the back of Su Yang’s head.
An exceptionally light, clean, floral fragrance permeated Su Yang’s nose and hauled his consciousness back from the abyss he was about to sink into.
Su Yang strove to drive the Half Withered Red, draining the last ounces of his willpower to fully force out the blood Gu from the tip of his tongue.
Just as the Gu worm permeated the paste, it began to whip around viciously. Su Yang grabbed hold of Luo Yu’s wrist and yanked the porcelain bottle towards himself before vomiting out all the paste containing the blood Gu.
Subsequently, he could no longer withstand it. His eyes slowly closed, and he collapsed weakly into Gu Feidi’s arms.
“Hold onto his throat!”
Luo Yu ordered at once, while tightening the cap on the porcelain bottle. “We mustn’t allow him to swallow any of the Hundred Poison Paste remaining in his mouth. If not, the Cold Pond Ice Spirit’s reaction would be even more intense, and he wouldn’t be able to endure it.”
Gu Feidi held Su Yang’s neck as instructed, so that he wasn’t able to swallow. Luo Yu sealed the porcelain bottle, then took the water and tools proffered by Qin Jianyue to help Su Yang clean out his mouth.
“You can now use your internal strength to help warm up his body.” Luo Yu said, “When his temperature has stabilised, bring him out of the hot spring. I’ll deal with this blood Gu first. If there’s anything unusual with his body, shout out to me. Your Uncle Yue* will be able to hear it.”
(*TN: referring to Qin Jianyue)
Gu Feidi held Su Yang close and nodded.
Luo Yu went ashore and was about to leave when he was suddenly called by Gu Feidi.
Gu Feidi thought about it for a moment before raising his eyes to look at Luo Yu. His voice trembled slightly as he asked: “Earlier, when Elder Luo mentioned the Cold Pond Ice Spirit, your expression was solemn…… If I may ask, his body is weak and has an aversion to cold at present. Was it caused by the blood Gu or Half Withered Red? Or…… is it due to the Cold Pond Ice Spirit?”