Bamboo Forest and Green Apricots (1)
Boundless and indistinct river surface reflects the willows swaying above the mist and ripples. The people on the pier are coming and going: the scholar is hurrying on, the businessman is walking slowly carrying his cloth-wrapper, and the amorous ladies are sending cheerful voices who are accompanied with several maids.
The floods in Wanjiang River have been staved off, and Taicang County has returned to the normal peaceful state. Various ships on the river come and go. Waves surge against the river embankment, rising steamy mist in a cloudy day.
A big wooden ship leaves the shore and makes a clatter, two lines of ripples are swayed behind, and then the ship starts to float up and down with the waves.
Ling Miaomiao feels her legs become weak immediately, and she lays her whole body weakly on the thin railing of the deck.
"My girl— be careful on the road—" Her father, the county chief, is standing on the shore, with his figure getting farther and farther away. The expression on his face is unclear, only a figure waving the arms exaggeratedly can be seen.
"Okay—" Ling Miaomiao resists the vomiting feeling and responds loudly, her action attracts a few curious eyes.
Wind with mist blows her hair in a mess. From a long distance, she sees the figure chases several steps forward with the help of servants and finally stands against the shore side. He wipes tears without regard to image, shouts with a crying voice which sounds so weak after travelling a distance, "My baby daughter——remember to write a letter to your father——"
Miaomiao feels a surge of bitterness. She stretches half of her body beyond the railing, waves the hand hardly to her father to go back.
"Be careful." Liu Fuyi pulls her cuffs and drags her back to the deck, "This railing is not stable."
Miaomiao then turns back, with a blank look.
The ship has sailed towards the middle of the river. Those gorgeous or humble ships that started together at the pier have already disappeared from the view, only a vast river around them.
This is the most comfortable passenger ship on the Wanjiang River. The ship is about one hundred feet long and is about five to six meters wide at its narrowest point. The cabin is divided into many small rooms, which can accommodate up to thirty people. Most of the passengers are people who have seen the world and have to travel long distances. At this time, they all stay in the cabin to rest. A row of carved windows lists on both sides, and some of them are still half open, exposing the silhouette of the people who is bending down to clean up the bedding.
No one stays on the deck at the moment, and Mu Yao and Mu Sheng are not there too. Liu Fuyi and Ling Miaomiao stare at each other.
For a long while, Miaomiao says dejectedly, "Sorry Childe Liu..."
"Forget it," Liu Fuyi flashes a trace of frustration in her eyes and then smiles, "Let's go, I will take you to your compartment."
The two enter the cabin one after the other and walks to the little compartment that belongs to Miaomiao, where they meet Mu Yao, who looks cold.
Miaomiao becomes scrupulousness and looks at Liu Fuyi discreetly.
Mu Yao is in a bronze color shirt, lined with a moon-white tulle skirt. The belt is loosely knotted at the lower abdomen position. Even if she casually wears a plain coat, she can still reveal her character of pure and noble. She freezes for a moment, her cold eyes flick over Liu Fuyi, and come towards Miaomiao.
"Miss Ling, you don't look very well. Are you seasick?" There is still a trace of concern in her cold tone.
"Yes... It's a bit..." Miaomiao feels flattered, and then Fuyi naturally says, "Seasick? I still have a silk bag..."
Before his voice has died away, Mu Yao's expression changes, nods her head quickly, walks past Liu Fuyi alone, leaving Fuyi standing in the wind.
Mu Yao is a good person who can distinguish good from bad, and she will not blame innocent and childish Miaomiao, but only abreact her resentment on Liu Fuyi who insists on taking the Missy for adventure.
She feels angry at his arrogance and self-conceit, as well as his indiscriminate promise.
She is also angry at something that she can't speak out clearly.
Wind blows Fuyi's clothes, his handsome and gentle face shows a stunned and helpless look, making him look a little cute.
Mu Yao walks away empty-handed, followed by the black lotus who is holding the bedclothes.
Behind the cotton quilt, there is a pair of smiling black eyes, that are Mu Sheng's eyes. He greets Ling Miaomiao happily, "Miss Ling, thanks to you, we can live on such a luxurious passenger ship."
After the words, he chases after Mu Yao step by step, "Sister, I will help you make the bed..."
Miaomiao feels that the air pressure above her head makes her breathless. She stands blankly. Fuyi smiles to her, "Can you make a bed..."
Does the hero even help her make the bed?!
Miaomiao hears a wave of alarm sounds from the system, and remembers of her task point that is not completed. She immediately modifies her previous remark, "No, I can't..."
"OK, let's go. For traveling extensively, you should always do this, I will teach you." He looks indifferent and bows his head into the cabinet irresistibly.
Mu Yao's footsteps slow down and she turns her head slightly, as if waiting for something.
However, she finds the pursuing Mu Sheng, who says to her, "Sister, why do you stop walking?" He holds the bedclothes and blocks his sister's view with a pure face, "Childe Liu is helping Miaomiao make the bed," his mouth turns up slightly, "let's go to the cabin too."
Mu Yao's expression narrows and then she takes the quilt and leaves.
Mu Yao stands still and looks back at him solemnly. The mole under her eye makes her charming and indifferent. But finally, she says another thing, "The breath on you is not good, are you..."
"No." Mu Sheng's eyes flicker and he answers quickly. At the end, he smiles with relief, "How can I forget my sister's orders?"
"That's good." Mu Yao lowers his eyes, opens the door of the compartment and walks in. Before going in, she looks back deeply at Mu Sheng, "To remember your identity, you are the hope of the Mu's family."
Mu Sheng stands on the gallery, watching Mu Yao's slender back. The sparkling river reflects light on his side face through the carved window, a small bright spot on the jade-like skin shakes slowly.
His dark and moist eyes reveal a complex look of alternating hatred and annoyance.
"Why do we need a straw mat under the mattress?" Miaomiao lies aside, watching Fuyi bending over and working busily, with his black hair draping over his shoulders, some of them falling down and swinging in the air.
She thinks that the hair of the black lotus is always tied up highly, fully showing the youthful vitality, but it really doesn't show any sentimentality, no wonder Mu Yao always regards him as a younger brother.
In fact, if Mu Sheng spreads his hair like this, relying on such a face... presumably he is a rare handsome man.
"The moisture on the ship is heavy, and the straw mat is for moisture protection." Liu Fuyi answers lightly.
"Wow, how clever." Ling Miaomiao sincerely admires, and touches the mattress, really, she feels a trace of humidity.
"Like a general." Liu Fuyi smiles, "If you travel more, you will have experience."
"How many places have you traveled to?" Miaomiao's eyes are staring wide, and the black eyeballs are full of curiousness, like a sweet new orange. When seeing her expression, all the tiredness will be swept away.
"A lot..." Liu Fuyi falls into memory, "At the beginning, I was always alone until I was injured once and met Yaoer..."
There is a faint nostalgia in his eyes, and a smile on his lips.
"Do you think... you should talk to her?"
Miaomiao feels anxious for their relationship, and she is even suspicious of the system. Where is the little instigation for delight? How long has it been since their cold war?
"What to talk?"
"A heart-to-heart talk!" Miaomiao is exasperated at his failure to understand, "You keep silent and she doesn't say anything, so you want to just get bored like this?"
"Does Yaoer..." A strange smile suddenly appears in his eyes, "She is angry?"
Ling Miaomiao is absolutely speechless. He turns out to be a direct man lacking a sense of romance.
In the original text, Liu Fuyi is such a man. Both for Ling Yu, who always pretends to be pathetic, and for Duanyang Diji, who is passionate and fierce, he doesn't know how to refuse, always keeps them at an arm's length, and grants whatever is requested. His character is just like a nice guy, as the old poem says, "As responsibilities are over, fame and wealth become irrelevant." However, it's a pity that he lights up the girls' thoughts of love, but then leaving them alone.
Now she understands that Liu Fuyi doesn't understand the girls' mind at all. He is terribly talented when it comes to catching demons, but unfortunately is like a kid when getting started with feelings. There must be many detours for him.
The night gradually draws down, the grey clouds are stained with fuchsia, and the deck gradually becomes lively. Many people are leaning against the railing and pointing at the sunset on the horizon.
Since they met in the afternoon, Mu Yao and Mu Sheng stays in their respective compartments. Miaomiao is so hungry that she couldn't endure it anymore. She takes out a large bag of field rations that her dad gave her from home.
After opening the bag, there are twenty round white steamed buns, on each bun, there is a five-petal plum blossom formed by cut carrot, which is white touched with red, making the bun so delicate.
Miaomiao takes one out. It's obvious that the chef has put his mind on making the buns, because the cold buns do not become hard at all. She takes a bite, biting the sweetness of the soft white bun.
Looking down, she finds that the steamed bun is filled with brown sugar, of which the warm color glows beyond dusk glow.
Her nose twitches and she begins to weep. She swallows it almost tolerating the soreness of her throat.
Outside is the cold river water, and night reigns above her head. The water, trees, and the ship are all bowing acquaintances of the wanderer. Besides the sweetness in her hand, what else really belongs to her?
A small boat is floating in the middle of the river, a strange face goes hurriedly, and the road ahead seems to be vast.
Ling Miaomiao thinks that she is of low class, and at this moment, she feels that nowhere is better than home.
Ling Yu, for seeking a man, had to turn away from her hometown and adventured to the mountains and waters, did she regret that?
Looking at the vast river, Ling Miaomiao says with a low voice, "Childe Liu, I know something interesting. In my hometown, it is said that there is an enchantress named Sai Ren at sea, and the boatmen can hear her wonderful song on the sea. They will be bewitched by her voice, and then the ship will hit the reef. "
"There are similar demons here." Liu Fuyi is not surprised when hearing the monster story, and says with his quite calm tone, "There may be a lot of water spirits in the river that confuse tourists. They are fantastic transformations of the unjust dead. There is also a demon, called Charm Succuba, who is able to sing and dance. The legend says it is glamorous, but confusing."
Miaomiao thinks these words for a while, showing a gossip smile, "Glamorous... have you seen it?"
Liu Fuyi smiles, "I have seen a lot of water spirits, but I have never seen the Charm Succuba. That demon is rare and always hidden in the mountain forest. Once it falls into the world, it will definitely cause disasters."
Liu Fuyi thinks for a while and says, "The predecessor says that the charm succuba is the most affectionate in the world, and her demon power is huge, but she will not take the initiative to hurt people. If she encounters betrayal, a different demon soul will be bred in the same body. The demon soul is called 'resentment succuba', whose appearance is the same as charm succuba, but the nature is extremely evil. They share the same body while terrorizing the world. The resentment succuba is the most taboo for all the demon hunters."
Ling Miaomiao is shocked after hearing that, "Is that... schizobulia?"
Great "Demon Hunt". The monsters in this world are set differently. The act curtain unfolds a small corner only, and it is full of strange things and tricks already.
Ling Miaomiao has eaten two buns, and takes a few more, planning to send them to Mu Yao.
The ship moves to a whirlpool, swaying slightly. The waggle makes Ling Miaomiao feel a little uncomfortable in her stomach. She leans on the railing, holding the parcel halfway.
The moon emerged just now is partially covered by the dark clouds, and it is already dark all around. Such a gloomy night!
The door of Mu Yao's compartment is tightly closed, and Ling Miaomiao sees a familiar corner of clothing.
That's Mu Sheng's light yellow shirt. Ling Miaomiao doesn't dare to move at this time. She looks at him silently, finds he sits at the door of Mu Yao's compartment, his cuffs are tightly tied, and put on his knees, he squints half, looks tired, but his face is still sober, as if a little beast ready to run.
Ling Miaomiao feels a little surprise: does the black lotus need to guard Mu Yao like this?
The next second, she hears a clattering sound of flowing water, as if something comes out of the river.
She looks back but there is nothing on the outboard of the ship. The night breeze is blowing straight in, carrying a stream of humid cold mist.
Eh, when did the window open?
Ling Miaomiao's eyes widen, and she suddenly realizes that there is a layer of black mist on the ground, which slowly gathers together, and forms a strange human shape. It crawls on the ground with hands and feet, and passes from Miaomiao's feet quickly, like a lizard.
She feels hot on the instep, looks down quickly and finds that the corner of the skirt and the shoes surface are wet.
What the hell is it?
This black gas-like thing quickly passes through the partition, like entering a place without anyone. On the clapboard, layers of dark yellow water stains appear quickly.
It goes straight to Mu Yao's compartment.