Edited by renderedreversed
The soul collectors took me to the Netherworld. I thought I must’ve escaped the next six lifetimes. I sighed a long sigh. In truth, I wanted to laugh out loud instead, but for some reason, I couldn’t laugh at all. My lips still had the taste of Lu Hai Kong’s lips, and the memory of it turned my heart sour.
He was still alive. For the rest of my life, there would no longer be a little fool called Lu Hai Kong.
I looked back at the road to the Netherworld. A feeling of loss came over me.
“Hurry up! Hurry up! Why are you so slow?! What tricks do you plan on playing?” a ghost’s tiny voice yelled. His stare was filled with suspicion as he watched me.
I pouted: “Why are you so impatient? This time I will obediently drink the Soup of Oblivion.”
Temporarily forgetting these feelings was also a good thing.
That brat heard my words and laughed coldly: “Soup of Oblivion? You still want to be reincarnated? First, obediently stay in the Netherworld for eight or ten years to pay for your sins, then we can talk.”
I asked: “Pay for what?”
The little ghost led me deeper into the Netherworld, but we did not go in the direction of the bridge (where souls wait for their turn to drink the Soup of Oblivion and cross over the bridge to be reincarnated).
Nervous, I suddenly tensed up. Could they be dragging me to the pot?
The heaven and the earth saw that I hadn’t committed any serious crimes, ah!
I was still lost in my thoughts when the little ghost said: “Last time you and that Celestial Star Chu Kong caused a mess in the Netherworld, Madam Meng took a leave of three thousand years. The Netherworld already doesn’t have enough manpower; now because of you it has even less manpower. We’ve wasted a lot of time. That Celestial Star Chu Kong was polite. He obediently stayed here for five years to atone for his sins. But you, you just turned your butt and went to reincarnate. Humph, humph, the Netherworld doesn’t bother with the human world, but now that you’ve come back, we won’t go easy on you!”
I swallowed. How could I have forgotten that time?
The Netherworld had many duties, and they wanted to punish someone. Even if I had a thousand lifetimes left to go through, I still needed to suffer this punishment before I could be allowed to leave.
This, this…this delay. If my punishment lasted till Lu Hai Kong died, then would I need to be reincarnated with him again?
While I was still lost in my thoughts, the little ghost led me to Yanwang’s palace.
- Yangwang: the king of hell/netherworld
“Yanwang, the Cloud Fairy has been brought.”
After the little ghost finished speaking, there was no reply. I looked up and saw two feet placed on top of a desk. Behind the desk was a man dressed in black sitting on a chair. His face was covered with a book, and it was clear that he was in a deep sleep.
The little ghost shouted again: “Yanwang! The Cloud Fairy has been brought!”
The man in the chair moved. The book on his face fell to the ground with a “pa” sound.
“Ah…en. Good, good.”
He put his legs down, wiped his mouth, and sat up. Then he turned a page of a book that was lying on the messy desk. With eyes still full of sleep, he asked: “Ah, that, what fairy? What crime did the fairy commit?”
My mouth twitched. Is this really the renowned Yanwang? He must be a replacement. He looked like a white ball of dough and his behavour was like a wretched uncle. The magistrate beside him helplessly sighed.
“It’s the Cloud Fairy that caused a disruption in the Netherworld twenty years ago.”
“Oh,” Yanwang’s eyes lit up. “It’s you, ah?! You did well, girl. The Netherworld was very lively then. It was very amusing! Haha…”
The magistrate next to him coughed. Yanwang pressed his lips together to refrain from laughing, and then he said with a serious look: “Well, what do you think we should do, magistrate?”
“Twenty years ago, Celestial Star Chu Kong was punished for five years, but Cloud Fairy Xiang Zi went to reincarnate and fled to the human realm. That’s a very evil thing to do, so I think her punishment should be tripled. I ask Yanwang to make her work for fifteen years in the Netherworld. This will also let the ghosts know that the Netherworld is a strict place. Even a slight mistake will receive a heavy punishment.”
Yanwang nodded: “Good, let’s do it as you say.”
After saying that, he went back to sleep in his chair.
They decided on this sentence as easily as they chose what to eat at noon: scrambled eggs or fried eggs.
Outside of Yanwang’s palace, the little ghost took me to the bridge. Just as in the past, there was a neat line of ghosts waiting there. The little ghost pointed at the big pot and said: “In the future, you’ll be making soup as Madam Meng’s replacement. Don’t let the soup spill over the pot. After fifteen years of soup duty, you can go and be reincarnated.”
I thought for a while and felt that fifteen years was not a very long time. Chu Kong needed to live for at least fifteen more years. I felt relieved at that thought, and picked up the ladle and began making soup.
In the Netherworld, there was no day or night. It was always dark here. From the spot where I made soup, I could see the people coming down from the reincarnation circle. All kinds of people came here, but they all had the same desolated look. When I first saw them like that, I felt for them, but over time, I turned numb to their expressions. Whether they were sad, crying, or laughing, I would only use a few words to grab their attention and give them a gentle reminder: “Stand in line. Here’s your soup.”
Without knowing it, twelve years had passed. Seeing that I only had three years left, I proudly kept my head high and continued to make soup. But fate played a big joke on me.
It happened on a normal, gloomy, Netherworld day. At the other end of the reincarnation circle, I saw a very familiar figure appear. For a moment, I was stunned: so stunned that the ladle I was using fell into the soup pot. After I regained my wits, I pointed a single trembling finger at him in disbelief.
“Lu Hai Kong!”
Originally, I thought that I’d never see him again. Originally, I thought that we broke the synchronization of our next six lifetimes together…
Distressed, I said: “I calculated everything, but I didn’t count on you living a short life!”
The Netherworld was a quiet place. Everyone could hear me sighing through gritted teeth. The ghosts looked at me blankly. Lu Hai Kong on the other side of the road also hesitated for a moment. His gaze fell onto me. After that moment of hesitation, his eyes squinted dangerously and he walked towards me. The speed was very fast. I had a bad feeling about this.
Now that this guy was in the Netherworld, he had all his memories back. He was no longer the Lu Hai Kong who loved me dearly, but now one of the twelve Celestial Stars, Chu Kong. Even if he remembered his experience as Lu Hai Kong, in his eyes that was just one episode of his life. In the present Chu Kong’s eyes, I’m a madman who had bitten his shoulders, fought with him, and even scratched him. A shrew who didn’t care about face and would fight him regardless of whether I won or lost. The jinx who framed him and let him be punished for five years in the Netherworld. Now he must’ve want to cut me into pieces.
My heart felt a little guilty, but he obviously provoked me first into doing those things. I was only protecting myself. Besides, I was so big-hearted that I saved his life and let him live in happiness for many more years. He should be grateful. In fact, he should be the one who owed me a favor.
I hadn’t yet finished comforting myself when I saw Chu Kong pull out a red whip. Aside from his loud shout, he didn’t say anything and flung the whip in my direction. I was stunned. Looking at his face, the same exact face as Lu Hai Kong’s, my legs refused to move.
The whip grazed my neck. The burning pain brought me back to reality. I touched my neck. There was blood on my fingers. The whip must’ve cut my skin open. I lifted my head and looked at Chu Kong. Chu Kong was a little surprised when he saw that he really hit me.
He frowned and shouted: “Are you an idiot? Such a slow whip and you couldn’t dodge it?”
I also frowned: “You hit me and yet you dare shout at me?”
“Who…Who knew that you couldn’t dodge it.”
Indeed, I could’ve dodged the whip. The one I couldn’t dodge was Lu Hai Kong.
I walked to him. I didn’t care if I could beat Chu Kong or not; I just grabbed his sleeve and said: “You, short-lived ghost, it was a waste of my life to save you.”
Chu Kong was stunned for a moment, then he frowned and fiercely said: “Who wanted you to save me?!”
He paused for a moment. A strange emotion came into his eyes and then it turned into anger.
“You actually still dare to mention that lifetime to me! How dare you…”
He choked: “How dare you let me…”
For a while, He couldn’t continue to say a thing, so I said: “I was thinking that we wouldn’t have to see each other again after this lifetime. You didn’t live a long life. Wasting all my efforts. How could you die?”
I suddenly remembered what Lu Hai Kong said when I died. I shouted angrily: “Very good, no wonder when I was dying you said that we’d meet again in the next lifetime and next, next lifetime! You were fucking putting a curse on me! You wicked man!”
Chu Kong’s face paled. He also grabbed my sleeve and said: “You’ve already been in the Netherworld for many years and yet you didn’t go to reincarnate! It’s obviously you who has an ulterior motive. You also want to be entangled with me in the next lifetime! You insidious woman!”
I pointed at the pot full of soup and said: “Boiling soup for more than ten years is called insidious?! If you, little son of a bitch, didn’t cause a mess in the Netherworld, would I need to suffer this punishment?!”
“I caused a mess in the Netherworld?”
At the mention of that, Chu Kong got angrier. His loud tone of voice changed to a scary soft voice: “I innocently did five years of hard labor. In the end, you dare to say that it’s my fault! Soup of Oblivion… you still dare to mention the Soup of Oblivion?!”
The grip on my hand tightened. I only felt it turn numb.
I panicked and exclaimed: “What do you want to do?! What do you want to do?!”
Chu Kong dragged me to the bridge. While he was dragging me he picked up a bowl of soup. The ghosts around us feared the aura Chu Kong was emitting.
After twenty years of peace, the Netherworld was in chaos again.
Chu Kong grabbed my jaw and forced my mouth open. He smiled coldly and poured the soup into my mouth: “In the past lifetime, you escaped before drinking this, which made me live a bleak and desolate life. In this lifetime, you can’t escape.”
His power was on a higher level than mine. I couldn’t move even the slightest bit. I could only gurgle and spit the soup out of my mouth.
Chu Kong seemed to be obsessed with making me drink the soup. The more I spit, the more he poured. I drank bowl after bowl.
“This will make up for what you did in the past lifetime. This lifetime, don’t even try to escape!”
While I was gulping the soup down, I severely scolded him. Now I wished that I had trained in any kind of arts. Something that could make the person in front of me suffer. Something that’d crush my enemies’ bones, crushing them till they were nothing but powder!
I didn’t know how many bowls of soup I drank. Distantly, I heard the shout of the magistrate. Chu Kong flew over the bridge and went into the reincarnation circle.
This…this little bastard! He dared to copy me!
He remembered! He had all his memories! How dreary would my next life be?!
That was nothing. The real bad news was when the panicked magistrate said: “Hurry! Lift the Cloud Fairy! Drinking too much of the Soup of Oblivion will make her an idiot after reincarnation!”
I lied on the ground and awkwardly burped. I just wanted to call some beautiful girls to have them do a beautiful campaign.
- She’s playing again with words. 卧槽，尼玛 (Wò cáo, ní mǎ) it sounds like “I fuck your mother.”
I was thinking when translating this that she just can’t keep her mouth shut. If she did that Chu Kong would’ve probably forgiven her. Silly her.
The Netherworld has the same time as the human world. One year in the Netherworld is one year in the human world. While one year in the human world or Netherworld is one day in heaven.