Perfect World Chapter 8 – An Unexpected Visitor

on 08 21, 2010

“Wei.  Ni mei shi ba?”
/
“Hey.  Are you ok?”

“Hm?”  Xiao Yao pulled his chopsticks from his mouth and told Sheng Gu that he was fine.  If his two dinner mates didn’t know any better, they would have thought that he was eating more wood than actual food.  His mind was on other things, contemplating other matters.  Yi Ru was already asleep in the room beside them, next to Ling Er.  Even though they had told him she was going to be fine, he felt uneasy and wanted only to be by his wife’s side.  His head, like a pendulum, swung periodically towards his family’s quarters.

“Li da xia, wo yi jing gao shu guo ni, ta mei shi.  Zhi xu yao xiu xi he gan dao xing fu.”
/
“Sir Li, I’ve already told you, she’s fine.  She just needs to rest and feel joyful.” said Du Gu Jian Sheng, interrupting Xiao Yao’s reverie.  He was pretty indifferent to how Xiao Yao copped with his wife’s slow recovery, but being in his over-protective presence for the past week was getting to be annoying.  As usual, Xiao Yao had blamed himself for Ling Er’s condition.  She would never have had to leave her body for so long if he hadn’t fallen under Bai Yue’s spell.  Putting another bite into his mouth, Xiao Yao became lost in his thoughts once again.

*Tap, tap ,tap ,tap*
*Tap, tap ,tap ,tap*

Jian Sheng looked up from his bowl to see Xiao Yao tapping his fingernails on the small, wooden table in front of them, his eyes staring into nothingness.  Sheng Gu quickly stole a glance at Xiao Yao, then looked at Jian Sheng.  She could tell his patience with the young man was wearing thin.  Setting his bowl down, Jian Sheng neatly placed his chopsticks on top and cleared his throat.

*Tap, tap – *

“Oh – dui bu qi.”
/
“Oh – sorry.” apologized Xiao Yao, stuffing another hefty portion of rice into his mouth as he smiled at Jian Sheng.  He chewed his food quickly, but stopped before he could swallow.  Turning his gaze towards Ling Er’s room again, his mouth hung open, exposing the half-eaten food inside.  Sheng Gu and Jian Sheng stared at each other.  Nodding their heads in agreement, they turned their heads to look at Xiao Yao.  Reaching in a nearby basket, they each picked up a bun and hurled it at Xiao Yao, hitting him square in the head.

“Ni shi bu shi nan ren ah?  Zhi hui zuo zai ne li, xiang ge bai ci yi yang.  Zuo dian you yong de shi, hao ma?  Ling Er xu yao ni rang ta kai xin ni zhi bu zhi dao?”
/
“Are you a man, or what?  All you know is to sit there, like an idiot.  How about you go do something useful?  Don’t you know that Ling Er needs you to make her happy?” Sheng Gu shook her head as she added more food to her bowl, lecturing the worried young man.

“Wo…wo….wo…”
/
“I…I…I…” stammered Xiao Yao as he tried to respond.

“Wo, wo, wo – yong dian nao dai hao bu hao.  Ta xi huan shen me?  Xi huan gan shen me?  Hai zuo ren jia zhang fu…”
/
“I, I, I – how about you use your brain?  What does she like?  What does she like to do?  And you call yourself her husband…” mocked Jian Sheng. Xiao Yao frowned as he hunched his back over.  How embarassing.  He was being lectured by his master’s tough-hearted lover and an old geezer that, in his mind, knew only too little of what romance entailed.  He, the great Li Xiao Yao, ladiesman extraordinaire, was getting love tips from people who he liked to refer to as, “hopeless”.  If anyone ever found out about this, he’d be the laughingstock of the entire kingdom, for sure.

Blinking, Xiao Yao finished the rest of his dinner and proceeded to walk outside.  The sun was just barely above the horizon, painting the sky with hues of orange, red and purple as it wished the world goodnight until the morrow.  Sighing, the young warrior placed his hands on top of his head.

Li Xiao Yao, what am I going to do with you?…He smacked himself and shook his head at his own incompetence.  Closing his eyes, he began walking in no particular direction, just enjoying the gentle night breeze run across his tanned face.  He smiled and opened his mouth to release a deep breath accompanied by a side of stress.

*COUGH, COUGH, SPIT*

Xiao Yao pat his own back as he choked on a small bug that had flown into his mouth.  Spitting repeatedly, he managed to force the now dead insect out from his body.  Glaring at the tiny intruder, he began stomping on the ground where it landed, enjoying his minute victory over the vermin.  Smiling contently, Xiao Yao looked up at the stars and wondered what he could do to hasten his wife’s recovery.  Rest and joyfulness, was it?  Only one item of significance came to mind.  Twice, he had tried to provide a beautiful scenery for Ling Er that was founded on her favorite flower.  The first time was with Yue Ru’s help, and what they used wasn’t her favorite flower; they were only red.  The second time was during the night of fireworks and he had the aid of all their friends.  That event didn’t necessarily go as planned, either.  Now, there was only him, and the only time he had ever seen her favorite flower was when he had saved her when she was a child.  Xiao Yao supposed he could go looking for them.  The night was young.  Besides, if he stayed in that house any longer, Sheng Gu and Jian Sheng may beat his brains in.

*Pant, pant*

Xiao Yao climbed the last stair as he fell over outside the front door of Sheng Gu’s residence, exhausted.  He had searched for red dandelion seed balls(?) the entire night.  Enlarging one of his swords, he was able to cover quite a bit of ground, but to no avail.  Tightening his fists, he gripped the closest thing he could find: white dandelion seed balls.  Dissatisfied with the failure of his reconnaissance mission, he began flailing his arms and legs around like a spoiled child that couldn’t find his Christmas gifts.  Hurling the flowers into the air, Xiao Yao laid back and watched as the morning wind scattered them around his body.  Suddenly, the door opened.

*BAM*

Sheng Gu walked over Xiao Yao’s body before she heard him groan in pain.  The door had caught the side of Xiao Yao’s head when she opened it to go outside.  Looking down immediately, Sheng Gu saw Xiao Yao, teeth clinched tightly with his face scrunched in agony.

“AHHH!  Ni zai gan shen me?!  Ne me zhao jiu xiang xia si ren ah?!”
/
“AHHH!  What are you doing?!  Trying to scare people to death?!”

Xiao Yao stood up, rubbing his head in small circles.  Hissing in pain, he tried to explain to Sheng Gu his plan to speed up Ling Er’s recovery.  Looking around, she saw traces of the white seeds that had been thrown into the air just before she came out.  ‘These aren’t red…’ she thought to herself as she told Xiao Yao that he had failed.  He stared at Sheng Gu with an attitude of ‘Gee, thanks’ written all over his face.

Flipping out of the window, a figure quickly made his approach to the two early birds as they stood staring at each other.

“Fa sheng shen me shi?”
/
“What happened?” Jian Sheng inquired.  Seeing Xiao Yao rub his head, he automatically assumed that the young man had messed up again and dismissed the situation as he opened the door and went back into the house.  A sudden, loud crash forced Xiao Yao and Sheng Gu to look towards the main gate.  An unfortunate horse had pulled a large wagon over a pile of rocks that forced the load to tip over.  Hearing the disruption, Jian Sheng again made his heroic entrance.  Finding that it was once again a false alarm, the old man grunted and slammed the door in annoyance.  Sheng Gu was the first to arrive at the scene of the accident and asked the travellers if they were hurt.  Aside from being in minor shock, the three men replied that they were fine.  Xiao Yao walked over to the fallen load and checked on the horse before turning his attention to what it was pulling.  Although the wagon itself was greatly damaged, the contents seemed to be unharmed, for the most part.  A corner of one of the crates had cracked open and leaked some of its cargo.  Upon closer inspection, Xiao Yao identified the contents of the crate.  Girls….make-up?  Scattered before him were bottles of facial powder, lip powder, and much more.

The men explained that they were merchants, having come a long way to do business in Nan Zhao Guo castle.  As one of them scratched his head, wondering what to do now, Xiao Yao picked up one of the bottles.  A giant smile cracked on his face as he stood up and asked for the men’s attention.

“Wo ke yi bang ni men.  Wo yao ba quan bu hong se de can ping mai xia lai.”
/
“I can help you guys.  Give me all of your products that are red.”

The three merchants exchanged glances and told Xiao Yao that the majority of their stock was in red, over seventy-five percent, in fact.  Xiao Yao merely chuckled and told them he had made his decision.  The men gathered amongst themselves and discussed in loud whispers of what to do.  Seeing their hesitance, Xiao Yao walked over to the broken wagon.

“Wo yie bang ni men xiu ce.”
/
“I’ll even help you fix your wagon.”

Hearing this, the merchants smiled and told Xiao Yao that he had a deal.  Sheng Gu smiled and shook her head as she realized Xiao Yao’s plan.

Xiao Yao waved to the three men as they drove off.  As soon as they were out of sight, he quickly spun around on his heel, laughing maniacally with his hands in the air.  He then  rubbed his hands together as he looked at all of the red make-up he had just purchased.  Sheng Gu called out to him to come inside for lunch.  Waving his hand, Xiao Yao shook his head politely and refused.  He had more important things to do.  Jumping on his sword, he carried two crates of make-up and flew off into the sky.  After he had travelled for some time, he leaned forward and landed in a large field of flowers.  Laughing to himself, he opened the first crate and got to work.

Holding Yi Ru in her arms, Ling Er had just finished feeding her daughter her evening meal.  She hadn’t seen Xiao Yao since the night before and inquired where he was.

“Shui zi dao?  Ta ke neng mi lu si diao le.”
/
“Who knows?  He probably got lost and died.”  Jian Sheng chuckled at his own joke as he walked by Ling Er’s room.  Frowning, Ling Er decided she didn’t like his particular brand of humor.  Sheng Gu assured her that he whould be home soon.

“Wo hui lai le!”
/
“I’m back!” Xiao Yao closed the door behind him and rushed to his wife’s room.  Seeing her with Yi Ru made him extremely giddy as he walked to her bedside, making funny faces at Yi Ru the entire time.  Yi Ru squeeled as her father tickled her feet.  Grabbing hold of Ling Er’s hand, Xiao Yao asked how she was.  Since their return to the real world, Ling Er would usually be asleep soon, but she wanted to see Xiao Yao before she closed her eyes for the night.  Seeing his appearance made her laugh out loud as she asked him why he was covered in red powder.  Xiao Yao tried to play it off as he was helping some merchants earlier that day.  Looking at him suspiciously, Ling Er scrunched her face as he tapped her nose.  And this is how it was for the next few days.

Ling Er had regained most of her strength and was recovering nicely.  Pacing the floor, she softly pat Yi Ru’s back until she heard a small burp.  Xiao Yao had disappeared again early that morning, saying he had something important to attend to.  That husband of hers was up to something, she was sure of it.  Sheng Gu only smiled when she asked her about Xiao Yao’s activities while Jian Sheng only grunted with indifference.  She placed Yi Ru in her bed and started humming her daughter to sleep.

Suddenly, the door opened and in stepped Xiao Yao, gleaming and covered in red, of course.  Ling Er kissed her daughter’s cheek and went to meet him.  Without a word, Xiao Yao grabbed his wife’s soft hand and dragged her outside.  Enlarging his sword, he smiled goofily at Ling Er.

“Xiao Yao gege, wo hai mei wan quan hao…Ni…xiang dai wo qu na li?”
/
“Xiao Yao gege, I’m not completely well, yet.  Where…do you plan on taking me?” asked Ling Er with a coy expression in her voice.  That did it.  Xiao Yao quickly picked her up and jumped onto the sword.

“Ni hui xi huan de.  Xian bi ze xuang yian.”
/
“You’ll love it.  But first, close your eyes.” commanded Xiao Yao, closing his wife’s eyes with his fingers.  Clasping her by the waist, he pulled her against him as they flew across the sky.  It was a beautiful day.  The sun was shining.  Birds were singing.  Not a rain cloud was in sight.  The sword slowly came to a halt as Xiao Yao told her to keep her eyes closed.  Hovering slightly lower, Xiao Yao whispered into Ling Er’s ear.

“Hao le.  Ba yian jing zheng kai ba.”
/
“Ok.  Open your eyes.”

Ling Er slowly cracked open her eyes and gasped at the sight that befell her.  Beneath them was an entire field of red dandelion seed balls, swaying in the wind.  Xiao Yao chuckled as he leaned backwards, causing the sword to swivel in the air, blowing a gust of wind over the field.  Immediately, the seeds burst into life as they surrounded the couple.  Xiao Yao landed the sword gently.  He watched joyfully as Ling Er spread her arms and spun in circles in the field of flowers.

This time, Ling Er thought to herself, she didn’t have anything to worry about; only to enjoy the happiness Xiao Yao gave her.  She grabbed Xiao Yao’s hands and pulled him into the field.  As they laughed and jumped around, tears of joy filled Ling Er’s eyes.  After so long, she can live a happy life once again.  Xiao Yao would give the world to see his wife this happy for the rest of her life.  As they ran out of breathe, Xiao Yao took Ling Er against his chest and fell backwards.  Laying against him, Ling Er wrapped his arms around her and watched as the remaining seeds fell around them.  She seemed to melt into him as Xiao Yao’s heart began to beat faster.  Soaking in her presence, Xiao Yao rested his chin on her shoulder.  Ling Er closed her eyes and rested comfortably in Xiao Yao’s warm embrace.

“Xie xie ni, Xiao Yao gege.  Ni dui wo zhen hao.  Wo ai – ”
/
“Thank you, Xiao Yao gege.  You’re so good to me.  I love – ”

Ling Er was interrupted by an out of breathe servant.  He collapsed in front of them as he struggled to deliver his message.

“Gong zhu, Li gong zi!  You yi ge hao xiong de ren zai zhao ni.  Ta xian zai gen Sheng Gu he Du Gu Jian Sheng da qi lai le!”
/
“Princess, Sir Li.  A very hostile man is looking for you.  He’s fighting with Sheng Gu and Du Gu Jian Sheng as we speak!”

Xiao Yao and Ling Er exchanged worried looks and rose to their feet.  Taking the servant along, Xiao Yao enlarged his sword and rushed back to Sheng Gu’s home with Ling Er still in his arms.  Ling Er prayed they would make it in time.  She didn’t want any more killing, any more suffering, to befall more people.

The sword shrank back to normal size as Xiao Yao placed it in his bag.  They looked in alarm as they saw Sheng Gu and Jian Sheng dodged and countered a series of furious attacks from a man with his hair tied into a knot on his head.  He had a short beard and was no amatuer in the art of swordplay.  Upon closer inspection, they recognized the man immediately.

“Lin Bao Zhu!”

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