The Husky And His White Cat Shizun - novelonlinefull.com
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I’m back! And MC's back too! Just not where he expected to be.
C2. This Venerable One Is Alive
"My heart had been like still water, thoughts become dust/Unexpectedly, in the cold night there shone a spring glow/Were it not for Heaven's favouring of the lonely gra.s.ses/Alas, this world would have nothing but wind and snow."
The clear, gentle voice of a Yue opera singer reached his ears. The words sounded like pearls and jade clattering, but it knocked on Mo Ran's head and made it hurt. The blood vessels at the side of his forehead were throbbing.
"Why's it so noisy! Where's this whiny creature from! Someone beat this lowly slave girl off the mountain!"
Mo Ran only realised with a start after he had hollered that something wasn't right.
…wasn't he dead already?
Hatred, chills, suffering, and loneliness stabbed his chest, making it hurt. Mo Ran opened his eyes abruptly.
The various feelings one experienced before death had dissipated like snow in the wind. He found himself lying on a bed. It wasn't his bed in Life-Death Peak; this bed was decorated with intricate carvings, the wood smelling heavily of makeup. The old, used blankets were in shades of pink and purple and embroidered with images of mandarin ducks frolicking in the water. Such blankets were only used by women in brothels.
Mo Ran was still for a moment.
He knew where he was.
This was a tile-place near Life-Death Peak.
'Tile-place' generally referred to brothels. It came from the idea of 'uniting and parting like roof-tiles', with the intention of letting the clients and prost.i.tutes meet and part on good terms.
During Mo Ran's youth, there had been a time where he was very debauched, and over ten days of a month would be spent in this brothel. But this brothel had changed hands when he was twenty-something years old, eventually turning into a wine shop. After dying, he had appeared in a brothel that was long gone; what was going on?
Could it be because he'd sinned too much while being alive and harmed too many young men and women, so the King of the Underworld was punishing him by making him reincarnate in a brothel to receive clients?
While having these nonsensical thoughts, Mo Ran rolled over without realising it.
And found himself staring at a fast-asleep face.
What was with this situation!!! Why was there a person lying next to him??
And it was a stark-naked man!
This man looked young and tender with delicate facial features. Fair and adorable in appearance, it was hard to tell his gender.
Mo Ran didn't have any expression on his face, but inside, his emotions were raging. After staring at that little gigolo who was still in dreamland for a while, he suddenly remembered.
Wasn't this the male prost.i.tute he really liked when he was young, the one whose name was Rong San?
Or maybe it was Rong Jiu.
Regardless of whether it was San or Jiu, that wasn't important. The point was, this male prost.i.tute later contracted venereal disease and had been dead for so many years, his corpse should have rotted already. But right now he was alive, all fair and soft, lying at the side of his bed. Part of his shoulder and his neck weren't covered by the embroidered blanket, and they were decorated with purplish love bites.
Face tense, Mo Ran pulled up the blanket, his gaze shifting downward.
This Rong Jiu or San or whatever, maybe Rong Jiu for now, the little beauty Rong Jiu had whip marks all over his body, and on his pale, white-jade-like thigh, someone had carefully tied several rounds of red rope.
Mo Ran stroked his chin, silently exclaiming: How kinky.
Just look at this exquisite knotwork, this skilled method, this familiar picture.
Did he frigging tie this himself??!!
He was a cultivator and had dabbled in matters regarding rebirth. At this moment, he couldn't help but suspect that he had resurrected in the past.
In order to confirm his thoughts, Mo Ran found a bronze mirror. Its surface was badly scratched, but in the dull surface, he could still vaguely see his appearance.
Mo Ran was thirty-two years old when he died, but the dude in the mirror had a rather childish-looking face. In his handsome features there was an arrogance seen only in the youth, and he looked no more than fifteen or sixteen years old.
There was no one else in this room. Thus, after being silent for a long time, the tyrant of the cultivation world, the bully of Shuzhong, the emperor of the mortal realm, the Lord of Life-Death Peak, Lord TaXian Mo Ran, expressed his feelings truthfully.
This 'F**k' roused the sleepy Rong Jiu.
The pretty boy sat up lazily, the thin embroidered blanket slipping from his shoulder and exposing a large part of his pale body. His long hair hung loose, his peach-blossom eyes appearing sleepy and reddened at the outer corners. He yawned.
"Uhh…Young Master Mo, you're up so early today."
Mo Ran said nothing. More than ten years ago, he did like androgynous beauties such as Rong Jiu, but now, as the thirty-two-year-old Lord TaXian, he highly suspected that his brain must've been kicked by a donkey for him to think men like these were good-looking.
"Did you have a nightmare because you didn't sleep well last night?"
This venerable one has died, does that count as a nightmare for you.
Seeing that he hadn't spoken for a while, Rong Jiu thought he was in a bad mood. Getting off the bed, he made his way to the window and hugged Mo Ran from behind.
"Young Master Mo, why don't you look at me, what are you s.p.a.cing out and ignoring people for?"
After this hug, Mo Ran's entire face had gone black. He wanted to rip this little devil off his back and slap that delicate face ten times over, but he held it in.
He was still a bit confused and hadn't made any sense of the situation.
Well, if he really had been reborn, then it would look like he had some affliction of the mind if he woke up and bruised Rong Jiu's face after doing it with Rong Jiu just last night. Not good, not good at all.
Mo Ran took control of his emotions, pretending to be nonchalant as he asked, "What day is it today?"
Rong Jiu froze, then smiled as he replied, "It's the fourth day of the fifth lunar month."
"The thirty-third year in the cycle?"
"That was last year, this year is the thirty-fourth in the cycle. Young Master Mo, you're so forgetful, you seem to be going backwards the more you live."
The thirty-fourth year in the cycle…
A flurry of emotions swirled in Mo Ran's eyes, his mind working quickly.
In the thirty-fourth year of the cycle, he was sixteen years old, and it had been a year since the Lord of Life-Death Peak recognised him as his long-lost nephew. Just like that, he went from being a bullied dog to a phoenix in the branches with a single leap.
So, had he really been reborn?
Or, was this an empty dream after death…
Rong Jiu laughed, "Young Master Mo, I think you're dizzy with hunger, since you can't even remember the date. Sit here for a bit, I'll go to the kitchen and bring you something to eat, how about fried spiral flatbreads?"
Mo Ran had just been reborn and still didn't know how to react to all this, but there wouldn't be anything wrong with following his previous ways. Thus he recalled his former dissolute self, and while holding back his disgust, smiled as he pinched Rong Jiu's thigh.
"That'll be nice, get a bowl of congee too, and feed me when you get back."
Rong Jiu got dressed and left. Not long after, he came back with a wooden tray. On it there was a bowl of pumpkin congee, two fried spiral flatbreads, and a side dish.
Mo Ran had gotten a little hungry. He was about to grab a fried spiral when Rong Jiu suddenly moved his hand aside and said sweetly, "Allow me to feed you, sir."
Rong Jiu picked up a spiral flatbread and sat on Mo Ran's lap. He wore only a thin outer robe with nothing else beneath. His thighs split apart, pressing against Mo Ran's skin and rubbing against him suggestively. The intent to seduce was clear even without words.
Mo Ran stared at Rong Jiu's face for a bit.
Rong Jiu thought he was getting h.o.r.n.y again and chided, "Why do you keep looking at me like this? The food's getting cold."
Mo Ran was quiet for a moment. Remembering the things Rong Jiu did behind his back in the previous life, a sweet, affectionate smile slowly spread from the corners of his mouth.
As Lord TaXian, he had done many revolting things, and if he wanted, he could be even more revolting than this. This was nothing more than a bit of improvised acting, as easy as child's play, and it was nothing hard for him.
Mo Ran lay back comfortably against the chair, smiling as he said, "Come sit here."
"I'm…I'm sitting here, right."
"You know where I'm telling you to sit."
Rong Jiu went red, spitting, "You're rushing so much, sir, why don't you finishing eating before…Aah!"
Before he could finish, he was pulled up roughly by Mo Ran, shifted forward, and pressed down again. Rong Jiu's hands shook, making the bowl of congee fall to the floor. As he panted, he said softly, "Young Master Mo, the bowl…"
"But, but you should eat something first…nhh…aah…"
"I'm eating now, see?" Mo Ran held him by the waist, his dark eyes flashing. Rong Jiu's lovely face and exposed neck were reflected in his pupils.
In the previous life, he especially liked to kiss those red lips whenever they were entwined. After all, this boy was pretty, liked having it easy, and was good at saying things to attract him. It would be fake if he were to say he'd never felt anything at all.
However, after knowing the things Rong Jiu's mouth had done behind his back, Mo Ran felt as if this mouth gave off a bad stink, and he no longer wanted to kiss it anymore.
Thirty-two-year-old Mo Ran and fifteen-year-old Mo Ran had many differences.
For example, his fifteen-year-old self knew to be gentle during intimate affairs, but at thirty-two years old, all that was left was violence.
After the deed was done, he looked at Rong Jiu, who'd been screwed till he was barely breathing and unconscious. He narrowed his upturned eyes full of dark undercurrents, somehow looking like he was smiling sweetly. He looked good when he smiled. His eyes were extremely dark in colour, and when seen from certain angles, they seemed to be tinged in a deep, lofty shade of purple. Right now, he smiled as he lifted Rong Jiu by the hair, carrying the unconscious person onto the bed. Picking up a shard of broken porcelain from the floor, he held it over Rong Jiu's face.
He had always sought revenge for even the smallest of grievances, and it would still be the same now.
When he thought about how he helped give Rong Jiu business in the past life, even wanting to help redeem him, and how Rong Jiu colluded with others to set him up, his eyes curved into crescents. He pressed the sharp porcelain shard against Rong Jiu's cheek.
This person did business using his body. If his looks were ruined, he'd have nothing left.
This pretty boy would then be living on the streets like a dog, crawling on the ground, kicked by boots, crushed, chastised, deserted, aiyo…just imagining it made him happy. Even the disgust of having screwed this person was dissipating.
Mo Ran's smile became even lovelier.
Exerting a little force with his hand made a fine line of blood appear.
The unconscious one seemed to feel the pain, crying out softly in a hoa.r.s.e voice. Teardrops clung to his lashes, making him look quite pitiful.
Suddenly, Mo Ran's hand stopped.
He remembered someone he used to know.
Then he realised what he was doing at that moment. After being stupefied for a few seconds, he finally lowered his hand, slowly.
He had really gotten into the habit of doing evil. He even forgot that he was already reborn.
Now, none of the things had happened, his great crimes hadn't been committed, that person…wasn't dead yet. Why did he have to walk the same old path so cruelly and violently when he could start afresh.
He sat down, propping one foot against the edge of the bed as he played absently with the porcelain shard in his hand. Upon seeing the greasy flatbread still on the table, he brought it over, tore the wax paper open and began taking large bites, eating till the crumbs got all over his mouth and his lips were glistening with grease.
This flatbread was the specialty of this tile-place. In reality, it wasn't that good, and compared to all the delicacies he tasted later in life, it was about as delicious as candle wax. However, after the tile-place closed down, Mo Ran never got to eat these spiral flatbreads ever again. Right now, the familiar taste of the flatbread was returning to his tongue from beyond the years past.
Every bite Mo Ran swallowed decreased the feeling that rebirth was unreal.
After finishing the entire flatbread, he slowly recovered from his initial stupor at last.
He had really been reborn.
All the evil in his life, all the things that couldn't be reversed, they hadn't begun.
He hadn't killed Uncle and Aunt, hadn't ma.s.sacred the seventy-two cities, hadn't deceived his master and family, hadn't gotten wedded, hadn't…
No one had died yet.
He smacked his mouth, licking his ghastly white teeth. He could feel a small wisp of delight spreading quickly in his chest, becoming a raging fervour and agitation. In his previous life, he had been an almighty figure, dabbling in all of the Three Forbidden Techniques of the mortal realm. He was more or less accomplished in the other two Forbidden Techniques, but even though he was highly talented, he couldn't master the last technique, 'rebirth'.
But he didn't expect that what he never got in life had come true after death.
His various unreconciled feelings, pessimisms, loneliness and such still remained within him. The scenes of Life-Death Peak being full of firelight and the armies' oppressing presence were still fresh in his mind.
At that time, he really didn't want to keep living. People said he clashed with his family and friends, causing them to leave him behind. In the end, he also felt that he was like a walking corpse, so bored and so alone.
But maybe something went wrong somewhere, because even a condemned sinner like him had gotten a chance to start over again after taking his own life.
Why should he ruin Rong Jiu's face because of a little personal grudge?
Rong Jiu was a greedy person who loved money. Giving him minor punishment in the form of not paying for this session and stealing some silver ingots would be enough. For now, he didn't want to be burdened by a human life.
"I'm going easy on you, Rong Jiu."
said Mo Ran smilingly, moving his fingertips and tossing the porcelain shard out of the window.
Then he took all the valuables Rong Jiu owned and tucked them away in his pockets. Only after this did he slowly pack up and leave the tile-place.
Uncle and Aunt, his younger cousin Xue Meng, Shizun, and…
As he thought of that person, Mo Ran's gaze instantly became gentle.
Senior Brother, I've come to look for you.
This novel's CP: Mo Ran X Shizun
There's a white lotus senior brother appearing, don't be on the wrong team~~
From now on, if you see 'Author's words', it means those words are all from the author. I'm only translating what they said. Author's words and opinions are not the same as TL's words and opinions (if there are similarities then it's a coincidence).
…and a friendly reminder that this house cultivates the footnotes Dao…
: The original text had ten words per line with the second and fourth lines rhyming. Here I translated it such that the English also had ten words per line with the second and fourth lines rhyming, and I managed to keep the original meaning. Ha! (TL;DR this G.o.d d.a.m.ned translator is flexing her language ability)
: (History lesson time!) In ancient China, there were a lot of terms for brothels. The author used several terms in this part of the chapter: 勾栏 goulan, 青楼 qinglou, 窑子 yaozi. To put it very simply…勾栏 originally meant 'theatre', but by the Ming dynasty it became a term for brothels. 青楼 is more commonly seen, and also misused extremely often; the ladies in 青楼were not prost.i.tutes, but very highly learned courtesans who entertained clients purely with their talents in the arts. Even for the rare few who did sell s.e.x, their clients were all of very high social status. As for 窑子, this refers to (lower-cla.s.s) establishments where only s.e.x is involved.
: 桃花眼, eyes that look like the petals of peach blossoms. It's said that people with such eyes have good romance luck.
: The numbers used here were 丙申 and 丁酉, 33rd and 34th respectively. Ancient Chinese used the 六十甲子 system to keep track of the years, with 60 years being a full cycle. The years are numbered according to the Heavenly Stems and Earthly Branches 天干地支, with 10 Heavenly Stems 天干 and 12 Earthly Branches 地支. The HHWCS universe has no such thing as the BCE/CE system and no points of reference for years or anything, so I'm unable to come up with definite numbers like 1870 or 2019; given the setting, this is really the best I can come up with.
: 油旋饼, a sort of 饼 bing made by forming a long, thin piece of dough into a spiral and deep-frying it. Couldn't find any official English names so I made up my own. Bing are something like flatbreads, so they're called that later in the chapter.
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