I Called for Cao Cao and Liu Bei Came
“You sent a letter?! When? Why didn’t you tell me?”
“Half a month ago.” Boss Shen playfully and cutely stuck her tongue out, “It’s your fault for not listening when I speak. Well deserved.”
If those bastards on Mount Daluo know that I’m here, they’ll come running over looking for me right away! They don’t care if I die from exhaustion. If they see me in a constable’s uniform, they’ll laugh so loud it can be heard throughout the three realms! They’ll even bring out gongs to gather all our old friends in the pugilistic world here to see me.
I don’t want to see that damn Shaolin geezer who asks for donations as soon as he sees someone, or that Wudang geezer who’s always trying to convince people they need to get him to perform ceremonies! The leader of Emei spells trouble too! I can’t cross paths with them either!
Moreover, if my ever elusive shifu finds out that I’m here, he’ll probably come here and try to set me up to become the Patriarch. Hell no am I doing that!!
What do I? What do I do? Should I go and clobber the messenger? But since it’s been half a month, not only should it have arrived, I bet he’s probably already on his way back I….
What do I do…?
I calmed down a while later though.
Heh, there’s nothing to fret about.
Even if he does go to Mount Daluo to deliver a letter, can he find my address? Even if he knows where it is, can he even climb all the way up there?
Mount Daluo is a very intriguing place. Our sect is situated in a mountain village that’s been segregated from the world for centuries. You’ll only see mountain flowers and wild plants on Mount Daluo, making it a fantastic place to train. The villagers that interact with us are simple and honest, and follow ancient customs. Their ancestors moved to the mountain many centuries ago and never descended the mountain since, because they couldn’t….
Mount Daluo is a steep mountain. The mountain path is difficult and arduous to traverse. It’s always had a reputation for being “Impossible to ascend, and impossible to descend. Cats have nine lives, and the graves there are covered in moss.” Normal people in the pugilistic world can’t even locate our place. And even if they do manage to locate it, they can’t climb it. Our disciples were able to climb it because our masters and martial mistresses took us there one by one.”
The mountain path is so difficult to traverse that my shifu has even used it as a graduation exam for his disciples. Disciples are considered skilful enough to leave the mountain if they can return home from the foot of the mountain and go back down. Our sect’s senior martial uncle has wanted to leave the mountains for decades and couldn’t. He has to bribe disciples leaving the mountain to help him. You think a messenger like you can climb the mountain?
I’m not bragging, but as far as I’m concerned, the only person from Nanjing’s Liu Shan Men who has a remote chance of climbing it is Boss Shen. I’m not worried as long as it’s not her delivering the letter.
“Ah, whatever. So be it.”
“Of course. What would you do otherwise?” Boss Shen continued in a tone where she paid no mind to it: “I just told you about the assassinations. Go and examine the corpses and look for some clues, so that I can list your names in the records for people who investigated the case. That’ll earn you credit. Alright, that’s all from me, head off now.”
I took a bite of my pear, relaxed my entire body and responded. Just as I was thinking about how to laze around in a bit, somebody from outside suddenly came with a report.
“Reporting, vice-captain. The constable who went to Mount Daluo to deliver the letter has returned.”
“Oh? Good timing. I was just talking about it.” Boss Shen waved her hand and said: “Tell him to come in and report to me.”
I was having a breakdown.
Isn’t he too quick?
He’s back?! Why?!
Hey! What happened to the cat with nine lives and graves covered in moss?! You lied to me, shifu!!
A moment later, a fine and thin man came through, bowed with both hands clasped in front of him and said: “Greetings, vice-captain, Master Su and Master Ming.” Su Xiao and I are official warriors of the imperial court. While he is indeed a constable, he just works at the office so he has to refer to us as “master” when he sees us as well.
Su Xiao, being not used to the treatment, bowed to him, while I glared at him out of astonishment.
Boss Shen: “Good work. Was it difficult to get to Mount Daluo?”
“It was hard. It was extremely hard!” The messenger sighed: “When I reached the vicinity of Mount Daluo, my eyes were taken for a ride. The girls there were more captivating than the ones at the brothels. There were large mountains everywhere. The mountain was so high the peak was in the clouds.”
No, his description isn’t retarded. I can’t believe the guy found Mount Daluo.
I angrily said: “Who are you? Tell me your name.”
The messenger had a “hehe” look on his face, and in a flattering tone said: “I’m Liu Shan Men’s exclusive messenger. I’m the number one runner who travels North and South, Iron Legs Wang.”
Why did it have to be this Iron Legs guy when there are so many messengers?!
“How did you find my home?”
Iron Legs Wang was still relishing the scene at Mount Daluo. He continually motioned with his hands in the air as he described it: “Man, that place is like the home of deities. There was so much fog and the mountains were so high.”
“I didn’t ask you about the fog!” I angrily stamped my feet and exclaimed: “I asked you how you found it.”
“I have a mouth, so I can just ask. Mount Daluo is famous. The villagers there all knew of it.”
I overlooked that….
I normally just go straight home and forgot that the villagers at the foot of the mountain usually see us.
But that still doesn’t make sense. Even if he did know where it was, how did he climb up there? But he’s called Iron Legs…
“You. How did you climb up?”
“I don’t have the skill to climb up there.”
Iron Legs Wang chuckled and excitedly said: “When I was wandering back and forth, not able to find a path up, I saw a beautiful girl that looked like an angel from heaven dressed in white. I saw her at the office when we held the recruitment exams. I remember she was your aunt, Master Ming.”
I feel bad when I remember her. It’s been a month, and she’s gone back as I thought.
“I was really glad to see her. The letter was originally intended for your seniors, so it’d be the same if I handed it to your aunt, right? And so, I walked up to her, greeted her and explained the situation to her. I’m not even shy to admit that when I saw the beauty of your aunt, it felt like I was struck by lightning. I couldn’t budge. I could only stare at her. I was worried that it was a bit confrontational so I continued to speak without daring to take another step forward.”
“Wh-What did she say?”
“She was really happy when she heard what I said and reached her hand out to take the letter.” Iron Legs Wang closed his eyes to relish the moment again as he continued: “A girl like a deity from the heavens. Her smile was so breath-taking. Her beauty is what do they call it… Unparasomething.”
I grind my teeth and retorted: “Unparalleled!”
“Yes, yes. Your knowledge is profound. That’s the word I was looking for. The smile of an unparalleled beauty. Man my legs are getting weak.”
“Alright, enough with the nonsense. Carry on.”
“Miss Ming’s martial arts are superb. I’ve wandered the world for so many decades yet I’ve never seen such an amazing style where a lift of the hand could allow someone to take something. She was about three or four feet away from me when she extended her hand out, and the letter seemed to just glide over into her hand.”
Boss Shen said with admiration: “It must be the Moon Sewing Palms. Shaolin has the Dragon Capturing Art, Wudang has Dao Natural Heart Manual, so Mount Daluo’s skill which allows them to take things through thin air like that should be the Moon Sewing Palms. I can’t believe your aunt’s martial arts are so profound. I’m even more eager to recruit her now!”
I ignored Boss Shen’s comment and hurriedly asked: “Shi-… What did my gugu say when she saw the letter?”
“Well…” Iron Leg Wang hesitated for a second. When I gave him an aggressive glare, he immediately replied: “She didn’t say anything. She just laughed and that was it. I was quite heartbroken by it.”
I suddenly felt some discomfort. A weird mood came over me. She’s… Not happy.
Iron Legs Wang seemed to be savouring the scenery from that moment: “”Your aunt got angry afterwards. She cursed ‘I’m worried about you, and yet you’re enjoying yourself, you traitor’. She then stamped her feet, her clothes fluttered and she flew into the fog without her feet touching the ground. I was so shocked I thought I actually encountered a deity. Master Ming, who do you think your aunt was swearing at? Bullying such a beautiful girl… That bastard really doesn’t know any better.”
I kept silent.
“Who else could she be cursing? Since she’s calling him a traitor, she must be cursing some guy who betrayed her of course.” Boss Shen looked as if she was smiling but not smiling at the same time, and winked flirtatiously at me. The ridiculing look in her eye made it obvious what she meant: “Bastard Guo’er, your gugu is swearing at you.”*
I stared back at Boss Shen: Hmph. Is it a good idea to be seducing me while your Song Ou is seeing the emperor in the palace?
Boss Shen: Come here, I promise I won’t kill you!
Me: No. Come here if you’re so tough. Come here. If you don’t chase me, then I’ll…
I came to the realisation that Boss Shen and I slowly developed a fairly trusting relationship this past month. And more recently, we’ve even been able to communicate just by exchanging glances.
But to be honest, I’ve got my own woes too. I feel a little melancholic. Shiyi is still angry with me, but I haven’t finished the matters on hand. I honestly have no way of ditching everything to go to her side. Further, her seniority… Sigh. Traitor, huh… I can only accept it.
Su Xiao gave me a pat on my shoulder and said: “Don’t worry, Big Brother Ming. Your aunt must just miss you. Instead of being troubled by it, we should do something else.”
“Do what?” I looked at Su Xiao puzzled.
“Investigate the case of course!”
The upholder of justice, little angel Su Xiao clenched his fist. He disregarded my sorrow like it was just dirt and in a righteous and awe-inspiring tone said: “Homicide cases happen daily in the capital, so how can we just ignore them?! Let’s go to the Qilin Guards’ main courtyard!” Without even giving me a moment to immerse myself in my sorrows, he grabbed me and started running as soon as he was done talking.
*In case you have forgotten, it’s a reference to Jin Yong’s Return of the Condor Heroes.