江湖路弯弯: Jianghu Road is Curved! Chapter 68

[Ko – is the name of a board game, but also describes a situation where two alternating (black and white) single stone captures would repeat the original board position. The alternating captures could repeat indefinitely, preventing the game from ending. – credit to http://senseis.xmp.net/?Ko
I know this is confusing, and I know nothing about ko myself, but just focus on the bolded part of the explanation.
Also, a situation of ko called ‘eternal life’ will be mentioned several times in the chapter, it’s some form of the ko cycle, which like the name suggests, can go on endlessly.
As an additional note, whenever we mention chess and chess pieces/pawns in chinese novels (particular c-novels set in the past), in most cases it in fact refers to ko, but for english readers referring to it as a chess game makes it easier to understand.]
The chapter title here continues from Ch 67: Mantis Capturing Cicada, remember when Nan Yi says “when a mantis is capturing a cicada, a yellow oriole is actually waiting behind them”?

(translated by xia0xiao1mei)

(edited by anniaxx)

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CHAPTER SIXTY-EIGHT

The Oriole Waits Behind

Within these past few days, Jiang Hu wasn’t particularly at peace, it was rumoured that Supreme Chief of Wu Lin Gu Xi Ju had fallen victim to a villain, having been poisoned, he currently lies in coma, the new appointed Deputy Chief and the original Advisor Bai Xiao Sheng took the opportunity to form their own factions and engage in a power struggle, seeming to be the forerunners of this raging storm.

In the boundless cave of Mount Kun Lun’s forbidden ground, two people, one old, one young, is currently playing ko.

“When are you planning to expose everything?” The white bearded elder had made an official appearance at the worshipping the heaven ceremony, the former supreme chief Ye Gui Nong.

“Don’t be hasty, let that Bai Xiao Sheng jump around for a few days first, I just like to see what people he had netted in within these ten years, using what kind of capabilities.” The youth in purple holds a black stone in hand, face warm like the spring breeze.

“These people think they are farsighted and prudent, but actually cannot even compare to half your finger.” Ye Gui Nong sighs, “In fact, you have long known Zuo Huai An had planted a spy by your side, isn’t that right?”

The youth in purple smiles: “Since I can plant a spy in Bai Yue Sect, they too are capable of planting an undercover disciple by my side as well, this is the simplest principle. I have just been waiting all along, waiting for that person to reveal himself in front of me.”

“Didn’t think it would be Bai Xiao Sheng.” He lightly sighs, “Although this is not unexpected, but it is still unfortunate.”

Ye Gui Nong says in surprise: “Could it be you have never believed he treated you with sincerity? These past ten years he has devised plans and went through life and death for you, I thought you had already given him your absolute trust.”

The man in purple bursts out laughing.

“Elder sure likes to joke around, who in this world can be absolutely trusted?” He slowly shakes his head, a look of pity, “This kind of thing called trust, is a toy that belongs to children.”

Ye Gui Nong says nothing, hand holding a white stone as he makes his next move on the ko board.

Fortunately, I, as an old man, have already seen enough of all this and retired back into the mountain forest, he thinks to himself.

One who is in the Jiang Hu, has no full command over oneself, subjected to countless calculation, endlessly harbouring suspicions, only one with a heart of steel can blaze a new trail made of blood, very clearly, the young man before him is precisely a master amongst masters in this aspect.

“Once Supreme Chief have released my wife and daughter, the Ye family will immediately retreat into seclusion, I will never pay any regards to the matters of the Jiang Hu ever again, no one would be able to find us.” Looking at the deadlocked ko game, Ye Gui Nong suddenly says this calmly.

The youth in purple raises his head, smiling as he casts him a glance: “Elder Ye is a dragon amongst humans (extraordinary figure amongst common people).”

A ray of golden sunlight sines down from above their heads, gently falling onto the ko board.

With a sound of “pa-da”, the man in purple places the black stone on that spot of sunlight.

“Elder Ye, you’ve held back.” The corner of his lips raises, revealing a pleasant smile with no restraint, “Looks like the heavens deliberately guided the way.”

(“You’ve held back” is kind of like saying checkmate, something that is said when you feel you can see your victory, but in a humble manner. As if to say – ‘I’m only winning because you are holding back on me’)

Ye Gui Nong once again looks at the ko game, and cannot help smiling: “Supreme Chief is a little too hasty, this is clearly an ‘eternal life’, it is a draw.”

Once started, the moves of the stones will continuously go back and forth, black and white eternally capturing one another without stop, hence creating an endless cycle.

Five days later, new news have been circulating around the Jiang Hu.

Gu Xi Ju raised from the dead, presenting a large number of evidence of Bai Xiao Sheng and the unorthodox sect colluding with one another, personally killing him and his henchmen. Due to being eager to fight Bai Xiao Sheng for the position, Deputy Chief He Shan Nai’s vitality suffered great damage, his reputation also crushed down into ruins, and had no other choice but to completely bow his head to submit to Gu Xi Ju.

And his greatest enemy Bai Yue Sect’s Sect Leader Zuo Huai An, was consumed by his power during cultivation, his skills diminished by a half, no longer have the capability to fight back, the unorthodox sect’s power thus collapsed a thousand li.

So far, Gu Xi Ju has completely secured his position as Supreme Chief.

In the bright and sunny third month of the year, everyone in Misty Wave Manor are riding high on the spring breeze, even their steps and expressions are filled with high spirits, and even Wu Peng who had just creeped in front of the hall to report, is also filled with joy.

“That Bai Yue Sect has really stopped clamouring just like this, making no further moves?” Gu Xi Ju looks at the message in his hand, raising his brows, surprised.

“That’s correct, after confirming, Zuo Huai An had once been consumed by his powers when cultivating his martial arts in his early years, in recent years, he has been relying on {{Xi Sui Jing}} to suppress his meridians from worsening, but ever since his last retreat into seclusion to treat Nan Yi, a big half of his skills have been scrapped, no longer able to recover it again.”

Wu Peng respectfully bows his head.

Gu Xi Ju sounds a hum, and then asks: “What about Bai Yue’s Young Master and Sheng Gu?”

Wu Peng shakes his head: “Both had been removed from their titles, Zuo Huai An announced the new acceptance of his final disciple, who will be cultivated to become Bai Yue Sect’s next sect leader.”

“Oh?” Gu Xi Ju cannot help laughing, “This sure is unexpected, could it be they are trying to plan something again?” This answer has actually made him feel at ease, an unorthodox sect that cannot strike back is not an unorthodox sect anymore.

He waves his hand at Wu Peng: “Off you go, if there’s any news of Bai Yue Sect, come tell me at any time.”

Wu Peng coming to report again, is already a matter that happens at the end of the fourth month.

“Supreme Chief, things are looking bad! That newly accepted disciple of Zuo Huai An’s is actually Fairy Sang Chan!” He is clearly very shocked and anxious.

However, when Gu Xi Ju hears this, he instead heartily laughs out loud.

“And here I was thinking what junior sister is capable of!” The expression on his face was firstly showed extreme disdain, then turns into indifferent, “Turns out after walking a circle around righteous sects, she found there are no place to seek refuge in, hence completely abandoning the light for the dark?”

“No need to touch her for now, with her here to stir this pool of muddy water, things will be much more fun.” He instructs Wu Peng this, looking extremely indifferent.

Wu Peng is surprised at how composed he is, but still accepts the orders.

“Oh right, are there any more news of that Bai Yue Sect’s Sheng Gu?” Gu Xi Ju asks this, acting as though it was nothing.

“Haven’t heard anything about her, ever since she was removed from the title, Bai Yue Sect has kept her existence deeply guarded, all lips sealed overnight.” Wu Peng is also very surprised by this matter.

“Perhaps she’s is hiding somewhere, plotting revenge.” Gu Xi Ju shakes his head as he laughs, “I’m actually really looking forward to her scheme.”

He understands her well, understands her extremely well, she will definitely find him for revenge, she definitely wouldn’t be able to swallow back this hatred.

He and her are just like that famous game of ko named “eternal life”, once started, it will continue without end, endlessly fighting on.

She is his best opponent, also one he had personally nurtured, this is a game with an endless cycle.

Spring passes and summer arrives, in a blink of an eye, it is already the fifth month. After taking care of some affairs, Gu Xi Ju specially ordered to have plum wine freezed and have it sent to the little boat by the lake, where he leisurely drinks it alone.

“Sir Wu is requesting an audience.” The maid brings Wu Peng up.

“Have any interesting news to tell me?” Gu Xi Ju comfortably takes a sip of wine.

Wu Peng respectfully bows to him, before saying: “Reporting to Supreme Chief, turns out that Bai Yue Sect’s Sheng Gu had already passed away two months ago, no wonder why this subordinate hasn’t been able to find any news all along.”

Gu Xi Ju freezes, he does not turn to look at him.

“What did you say?” He softly asks.

Wu Peng thought Supreme Chief is reprimanding his use of words for being too refined, hence repeating it again:“Bai Yue Sheng Gu has already died two or more months ago, that’s why Zuo Huai An would be in a hurry to recruit Sang Chan as his final disciple, if nothing goes wrong, Lady Sang Chan would officially become Bai Yue Sect’s Sheng Gu next month.”

“Died?” However, Gu Xi Ju’s focus isn’t on those following words of his, his fingers starting to gently tremble.

“She died?” He mutters, repeating the words.

“That’s the absolute truth, the former Sheng Gu has really died, it is said that for the battle on the eighth of the twelfth month last year, in order to steal the show, she forced thirty years of internal energy into her body, but unexpectedly, due to the previous arrow wound to the chest, she had already lost all her internal energy, this is simply an act of suicide.” Wu Peng shakes his head, “I heard that that Sheng Gu had later caught the cold as well, with the addition of troubles on her mind, she died in her sleep in the inn at the foot of Mount Kun Lun, never opening her eyes again.”

Answering him, is the sound of the wine cup exploding.

The celadon shards pierce the tip of Gu Xi Ju’s slender fingers, the blood clearly dripping, yet he disregards it.

He turns to seriously look over Wu Peng’s face, seeming to want to find a trace of hope from his expression.

“Have you investigate it thoroughly? Is there a possibility of a fake death? Doesn’t the gentleman by her side have the personal disciple of the Divine Physician?” His voice is still very gentle.

“Definitely no possibility of a fake death.” Wu Peng thought that the Supreme Chief’s loss of composure is due to being overjoyed, hence speaking in a more cutting clear manner, “That day at the inn, many people saw a mute wailing as she scurries down the corridor, following that, Sheng Gu’s corpse was carried out from the room by that gentleman, according to the words of the spectators, that surnamed He gentleman’s eyes were both red, clearly showing he cried!”

“Right now, Sheng Gu’s corpse is buried on Cloud-Rising Mountain, this subordinate has personally seen the grave, and that Gentleman He had already left with that mute lady.” Speaking up to here, Wu Peng narrows his eyes.

“Congratulations Supreme Chief, congratulations Supreme Chief! With yet another enemy gone, Supreme Chief is now invincible!” He loudly shouts.

However, Gu Xi Ju does not reveal an ecstatic look as he had expected.

He only stares at the lake water below his feet, quietly falling into a daze.

A round smiling face appears amongst the emerald waves.

“I will definitely exact revenge on you.” That face smilingly says to him.

“Ensuring to teach you how to be wholeheartedly grieve stricken for once!” She says in a light tone.

“How pitiful, you have all been deceived.” He turns his head, smiling at the pale faced Wu Peng. “This is a scheme, this is her scheme. The grave is empty, she must be hiding in an unknown place, practicing evil martial arts, she will still return to find me for revenge.” He mutters.

Deep down, Wu Peng proudly laughs, he was precisely waiting for Supreme Chief to say this.

“Supreme Chief is overthinking it.” He bows his head and continues reporting, “This subordinate has also thought this is a ‘cicada casting off its skin’[1] plan, therefore, I had specially dug up that Sheng Gu’s grave in the middle of the night, not only does the grave contain her daily clothing and ornament, even her bones are in good order. This subordinate has specially investigated into it, the bones matches with her stature, and even the wound to the chest is in the same spot, the dead person is indeed the Sheng Gu called Pang Wan, there cannot be any mistake at all, this subordinate can guarantee this with his life.”

Gu Xi Ju does not speak, he gazes at the illusory reflection in the water, eyes containing thick dullness, so dense it cannot possibly disperse.

“You opened her coffin?” After a long time, he slowly asks, “Who allowed this?”

His tone soft, lightly coated with disrespect, but it was enough for the those below to instantly fall into an abyss beyond redemption.

“Supreme Chief! Your subordinate has done wrong! May Supreme Chief show leniency!” Wu Peng fearfully drops to the ground, his back drenched in sweat, entire body is pushed down by strong pressure, preventing him from being able to lift his head.

He would never have imagined, after trying to act smart by thinking he could read his master’s mind, it turns out he had wrongly hit the wrong spot with his bootlicking instead.

Gu Xi Ju says nothing, only patting Wu Peng’s shoulder, all that can be heard is a sound of “ka-cha”, and his arm was removed from his shoulder.

Wu Peng’s tears flowed down from his eyes, he kneels on the ground, enthusiastically thanking Supreme Chief for showing mercy, allowing him to live. Then scrambles up as he drags his severed arm along, crawling away.

Gu Xi Ju glances at the wine cup by his hand, lifting it up, with one wave of his long sleeve, it was thrown into the lake.

That sweetly smiling face in the water thus fall apart, disappearing.

“This is your revenge? Death?” He raises his head to the sky, raising the corners of his lips, “You wish to get rid of me forever?” In the ink blue sky, the same charming face appears in that round moon, gazing back at him with a beautiful smile.

“Why are you not continuing to hate me?”

“Why are you not taking revenge on me?”

He gazes at that curve of a sweet smile in the moon as he falls into a daze, those pink flushed cheeks, those almond eyes like black grapes, those lips like a red water chestnut.

How intelligent of a person he is ah, he had once planted a thought in her mind, waiting for it to sprout, bloom and bear fruit, whether this thought is about love or hate, it eventually filled her heart, causing her to no longer be able to fit anything else in it.

He and her, are like light and dark, day and night, the black and white stones in the ‘eternal life’, should originally be opposites living in harmony.

—— ‘eternal life’, the famous cycle of ko, several stones captures one another, with multi-associates, black stone takes the ko to capture the opposing side, forcing white stone to take the next ko, white stones take the capture then calls a killing move, forcing the black stones to take the ko again, both sides with their hands tied, yet no one can stop, because whoever calls stop first will lose. This should originally be a game with a never-ending cycle.

“How ridiculous, how very ridiculous.”

He narrows his eyes at that face, his pupils completely clouded.

“I will not forgive your cowardly retreat, not even if you are dead.”

Never will, definitely not, not even after generations and generations.



[1] Cicada casting off its skin or jīn chán tuō ké / 金蝉脱壳 is a saying that refers to a strategized escape or a disappearance act from an entangled situation, just like how a cicada leave behind its cast-off part in moulting.

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35 thoughts on “江湖路弯弯: Jianghu Road is Curved! Chapter 68

  1. Cliffhanger.. my nemesis. You kept appearing in every chapter.
    Waaaaa… Wanwan died…. Nooo… please say it isn’t true. It must be a ruse by HQL right.. righttt….?

    Didn’t thought this chapter would be updated so fast. Thank you ms/mr translator for your hard work.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. thank you so much for updating!!!!!!!! love love love love love love the work you put into it!!! Although this chapter got me sad… I quite like my psycho guy characters and i’m feeling sorry for gu xi ju, why can’t you differentiate love from hate oh boy you got yourself in this situation gxj!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. thank you—!
    noooo! wan wan! uwah—! the thing that hurt my heart most was about the inn scene, where ah zhuo ran out in a panic, and he qing lu was carrying her in a panic! author, please, i want details! details!! give me more feels, lol!
    lol, that skip to gu xi ju! -thumps fist on table- who cares about him?! but i like seeing him shocked, hahaha! and also him being angry about wan wan’s grave being desecrated!

    Like

  4. GXJ comments about PW resembles a lot like extremely twisted and possessive love. Huh, when you had her you didn’t treasure her, and now that she’s gone you miss her. Hmph, you lost your chance! Plus, HQL is more adorable then your twisted self!

    But PW can’t be dead… right? *sobs* The Cliff is too steep I can’t.

    Thanks for the quick chapter after that cliffhanger!

    Liked by 7 people

    1. I want to press like on your reply but it requires me to reg. Which is too bothersome😩…

      Definitely agree with you abt GXJ. Even though he won, I feel that he lost when concern abt Wanwan.. heh.. he deserved to be lonely.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Thank you. 💜💛💚

          Yes still lingering around here… hoping a fan would ummm bring spoilers… at least confirming wanwan is alright or smtg…

          how mamy chapter till this novel end?

          Like

  5. Really….his feeling for PW is complex. Is it lonely path as a supreme chief and he need someone beside him in that loneliness. But sadly, he chose that someone to be ‘eternal’ opponent rather than companion. Is it because he doesn’t want betrayed if he chose her as companion? And he more prefer her as his opponent and trusted her to make him excited and he anticipates what she will bring in his lonely but boring world. But, sadly the death news makes ripple in his tranquility and continue his life in the lonely path as supreme chief. And, he deserve d it…he never trusted someone else beside him and thats’ the different between him and HQL..

    It’s sad that the story almost reach finish lines. Now, I only wait for the happy news.. 😁😁

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Somehow Ko in this chapter make me remember of Igo (a chess like game in japan). Based on my knowledge of the game (read Hikaru no Go) there something like Ko battle when the player playing an endless fight. Is it a same??

      Like

    2. Your post gave me an idea… Maybe he can’t trust companions because they can one day betray him like Bai Xiao Sheng or Fairy Sang Chan, but in a weird way, you can always count on your enemies to try and kill you. He has made Pang Wan hate him so much that her actions should be somewhat predictable. Just a thought though

      Like

  6. The end? 😄
    I wonder if she’s gonna reincarnate into another body, lol…. I don’t see how she’d use the body that’s been buried, and it really seems she’s died. The author even busted all the speculations we had of her faking her death. How will this story proceed… interesting~

    Liked by 1 person

  7. She cant be dead, this is a HE story, right?
    But I like the fact that something finally tormented this ass&*^% GXJ and it was something he never expected.
    Though I wonder how he survived his assistant’s killing sword.
    As ever thank you for this wonderful story, it is indeed captivating

    Like

  8. i don’t believe she die, don’t forget our gentleman is a genius who can make mask that resemble human and he has many ways to create corpse ‘pang wan’.
    that the best revenge pang wan can do, by letting GXJ know that she dead. to make him to be the most lonely person…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ahh true… i forgot abt that. HQL does hv that skill. He is a genius and power to hide wanwan. Thank you for the reminder. 💜💛💚

      I also like laexdream speculation on reborn too.. the scene where new face reborn wanwan hv to convince HQL that she is previous wanwan would be funny.

      Like

  9. Thank you for the new chapter !! Two chapters in two days, awesome.
    Good to see GXJ anxious for on d. What a strange, twisted love. Gentleman He – I am depending on you to make a HE out of this novel 🙂

    Like

  10. SPOILER: If you don’t want to be spoiled don’t read this shit post!!

    Anyone wants some spoiler? Because I can’t stop this urge anymore, even though I’m a guy. I read the RAW and………………….

    Wan wan didn’t die, it was just a fake one put by his father. And after 2 years, wan wan together with his cute tsundere hubby (I guess you all know who it is) went back to central. And guess what, his tsundere hubby fire some fireworks for wan wan’s 18th birthday~ (What wan wan said to the asshole before she was stabbed.) And the side story of Ni yan was just so…. I feel sad to that cool guy T.T…. He’s a tsundere brother with a slight siscon.

    Like

  11. I think this was all planned by nan yi and disclosed it to gentleman afterwards. That way he could take pan wang away from the sect and keep her safe.

    Like

  12. Thanks for the translation – I am glad to read about Gu Xi Ju having sad thoughts for eternity. Or at least until he finds out how he’s been left behind. He thinks he’s Pang Wan’s opposite number and that they would rotate around each other for eternity. However, she’s found her true opposite in The Gentleman and I doubt she’s even thinking of him at all. Looking forward to find out how they tricked Gu Xi Ju.

    Like

  13. OMG I am literally crying my eyes right now. WAN WAN …… DONT DIEEEE. Gentleman He needs you!~!!! This better be a good ending or else!!!!! SOMEONE GONNA DIEEEEE!!!!. As my heart can not keep up with this CLIFFF and sadness!. Wished WAN WAN could have like married multiple hubbys He + Senior Bro. Soo many hotties I am shipping them left and right. Do feel sorry for GXJ, as his heart was hardened to cope with the world darkness, and in the end he became quite possessive to the point of driving his true love (which he was blinded of) into point of no return. Wuuu wuuu *tears crying*

    Like

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