Wei Chi Li quickly turned her head and almost trip due to the shock. She staggered a few steps to a stop and frowned: “Sister? Why are you here? The sprain from last time has not healed and this trip is dangerous, you….”
“Now, why do you always nag like an old woman?” Wei Chi Die interrupted her impatiently, “Don’t dawdle, I have told Xin Ran to go back to stand guard.”
With one sentence, Wei Chi Li was speechless and have no choice but to catch up.
“Sister, are you worried about me? That’s why you ignore the dangers and come along?” Wei Chi Li followed Wei Chi Die by the side as she said happily.
“Shut up.” Wei Chi Die snorted, “Who would be worried about you? I am just afraid that you and Xin Ran are too stupid and by then if something messes up, I will have to deal with the aftermath.”
Wei Chi Li did not say anything anymore and was secretly laughing. But her heart seemed to be instantly shone by the sun, it was warm.
The phrase ‘Tofu-like heart and knife-like mouth’ simply described Wei Chi Die incisively and vividly.
She did not say anything else to provoke her. The 2 picked up their pace as they used QingGong all the way to the north. Although Wei Chi Die was still not agile, with QingGong, there was not much problem. After exactly an hour later, they have arrived at GuoLong Mountain.
GuoLong Mountain was dangerous and most of it was cliffs and there were very few people nearby. But the whole of it was not high and there was a seam to the north like the mountain was split with an axe by a god. If one wants to take a shortcut to reach the border of the Northern Territory, following this road through the mountains and then all the way to the north.
Wei Chi Li looked at the road, thinking about something.
“What’s the matter?” Wei Chi Die glanced at Wei Chi Li then at the pitch-black mountains in the distance, “Although that is considered a path, basically no one goes through it. It was said that it was extremely dangerous, so do not try it. Royal father decided to build the trade road there with the Yan Country and planned to go around this mountain. 2 sides have many villages, so it is much easier to walk.”
Wei Chi Li gave an ‘oh’ response and looked around the surroundings, pointing at a dark area in the distance and asked: “Is that the place we are looking for?”
“It should be. There must be guards that were sent to stationed around here. We should be careful.” Wei Chi Die said as she lowered her body and head over with haste.
Wei Chi Li followed behind then turned to glance at the road. Both sides were cliffside and looking from her angle, it looks like 2 axes standing upright. The blade of the axe was facing the sky which was much terrifying at night.
After approaching the dark area, it shows its original appearance. The walls were made by stone bricks. It must have been beaten by the wind and rains for several years, making it looks mottled and there were some plants stuck to it, causing people to feel uncomfortable.
The 2 hid their breath, went around near to the gate, and raised their head to look.
“There are 2 people at the gate and 1 above.” Wei Chi Die whispered.
Wei Chi Li raised her head to look then uses her limps and within 2-3 steps, she reaches the top of the wall and sends herself up, revealing a pair of eyes to look in.
Seeing a team of guards passing by and the leader still has a fire torch in his hand. Wei Chi Li fell back down to the original location quietly, bending over and said: “There are also a lot of people inside.”
“Then we have to deal with the ones outside first then mix in.” Wei Chi Die whispered and wanted to move forward, but was pulled back by Wei Chi Li.
“I will go first, in case there is an ambush.” Wei Chi Li whispered and not allowing any discussion, she walked ahead with her back against the wall. 1 step at a time as she slowly approaches the tightly close gate.
The guard above was dozing off and from his angle, he could not see Wei Chi Li at all.
Wei Chi Die stared at Wei Chi Li’s back in a daze, not saying anything as she followed obediently.
Wei Chi Li has walked to a suitable distance then in a sudden peal of thunder, she rushes over and hit the back of the left guard’s neck accurately with her palm. That guard did not even let out a cry as he fell to the ground.
Before the other guard opened his mouth, Wei Chi Li covered his mouth and nose then knocked his head heavily on the wall behind and he did not move anymore.
Her speed was extremely fast and the whole process was not discovered by the others.
Wei Chi Die was amazed in her heart but did not show it on her face. She walked forward quickly and together with Wei Chi Li, dragged the 2 along the wall back to the corner where there was no one. Then reached out to take off their clothes.
“Tsk tsk, these clothes are too smelly, how long have they last taken a bath?” Wei Chi Die was very dissatisfied but seeing that Wei Chi Li did not change her expression as she quickly put on the clothes, her lip’s twitches aggrievedly, pinching her nose and put on the clothes.
“Shh. they are going to change shift.” Wei Chi Li jump onto the top of wall then jumped down back down again. Then pressing against the wall, she ran back to the original location.
The gate was pulled open from the inside and 2 guards dressed in the same brown clothes, yawned, squinting their eyes as they walk out. Just as they were about to say something to Wei Chi Li and Wei Chi Die, the 2 of them turned their heads and flashes in, closing the gate with haste.
Only then did the 2 guards were fully awake as they looked at each other: “These 2 bastards must be bored, I will tell the team leader tomorrow and let them stand guard for a few more nights.”
The other guard chuckles, expressing his agreement.
Wei Chi Li and Wei Chi Die lowered their heads and went around a few houses. Along the way, they came across several guards but only took it as they have just come back from their night watch and did not notice anything unusual.
Behind a few rows of houses, was where the prisoners were kept. There was a large space in front of the door with some sundries. Borrowing the moonlight, they could see that there were still some bloodstains on the ground that were not washed off
Wei Chi Die could not help but lean towards Wei Chi Li.
Wei Chi Li has already gotten used to seeing these things, so she did not pay much attention as she quickly walked towards the prison gate. It may be because of the strict security outside, or maybe it was because most of the people imprisoned here were already on their last legs, there was no one guarding here.
Wei Chi Li walked in first. The moment she went in and passed through a corridor, strong blood smell rushed over, making people headache from the choke.
This kind of bloody smell was different from the fresh ones as there was a disgusting smell mixed in it, causing Wei Chi Die to convulse from retching after taking a few steps.
Unexpectedly, her mouth was covered by Wei Chi Li. She widened her eyes and could not help but moved in her throat….
“Shh” Wei Chi Li turned, her expression was profoundly serious and when she turned around a corner, she could see a person sleeping on the ground, snoring.
It does not take much effort at all. Wei Chi Li said in her heart. However, just in case, she picked up the person then with a knife gesture, she hit his back and placed him back to the same spot in the same posture.
Pity that person, fainted before he woke up.
While Wei Chi Die searched the table on the side and found a thick and filthy name list. Borrowing the candlelight, she opened the name list and scrolled down according to the time and quickly found that spy named Yang Zheng.
The name was not strike-out which proves that the person was still alive. Wei Chi Die was relieved and after seeing clearly which cell he was in, she put the name list back.
On the other side, Wei Chi Li has also taken a set of keys and stood up. Their cooperation was very tacit as if they have cooperated many times.
The more inner they went, the lesser the prisoners. At first, some people were willing to raise their head to glance at them, after which, the people they have passed by seemed to be dead, lying there motionless in the cell.
Occasionally, a few people would groan, making people’s hearts feels heavy.
Wei Chi Li has never been to this kind of place in her life. There was no hope of life, no breath of life, like hell but was even more depressing than hell.
Suddenly, Wei Chi Die behind, grabbed her, and whispered: “Listen, someone is singing.”
Wei Chi Li gradually stopped and listened carefully. Sure enough, there was intermittent singing from the distance, but the sound was extremely muffled.
“How come it’s seemed to be coming from underground?” Wei Chi Die’s expression suddenly changed.
In that instant, Wei Chi Li shudder. She turned around and hide behind Wei Chi Li, probing her head out and her voice was trembling: “There shouldn’t be some, things that can’t be said, right?”
Wei Chi Die rolled her eyes contemptuously. She remembered that her sister has been very courageous since young, so why was she scared of these now.
Wei Chi Die reached out to drag Wei Chi Li and pushed her forward: “Hurry up!”
With a wailing face, Wei Chi Li put on a brave front and walked forward.
It was huge on the inside, hence the 2 of them went around many turns and the singing gradually become clearer but it still comes from underground. Occasionally, people from the nearby cells would sing along, but it was just 1-2 sentences then no longer have any strength to continue.
On the other hand, the person singing has sung for a long time and was still singing continuously.
Wei Chi Li was even more puzzled and really wanted to meet the singer in the cell.
“Just now, on the name list, Yang Zheng’s cell is 69.” Wei Chi Die said, but the moment she said that, she stopped because it was a dead-end in front of her, “But I have counted till here, and there is only 68.”
They looked at each other and both saw confusion in each other’s eyes. They began to search around, comparing the portrait with the people in the cells.
Wei Chi Li become anxious as time was running out. They must rush back before dawn to ensure they would not be discovered.
That singing stopped for a while before sounded again. Wei Chi Li felt that this song was a bit familiar but could not remember where she has heard it before. At this moment, Wei Chi Die suddenly stood beside her as she talks to herself in doubt: “This song, seems to be the Northern Territory folk song.”
Only then did Wei Chi Li suddenly realized she seemed to have heard it from among the fragments of memories.
“Is it possible that there are people from the Northern Territory?” Wei Chi Li frowned but discerned the direction of the sound as she took each step towards an empty cell.
“Underneath.” Wei Chi Li endured the goosebumps as she said that. She found the key to open the door then pushed asides the hay. As expected, there was a small secret door on the ground.
Wei Chi Li opened the secret door and took a deep breath then slowly climbed down the steps. Inside seemed to be a separate cell and after going down the steps, there was an open space, and the wall was inlaid with reinforced railings. Circling out a cage and there were exactly 3 locks on the door.
Wei Chi Die has also walked down and was stunned when she saw the scene in front. Seeing a person in the ‘cage’, all his limbs were bound by chains. He sat on the ground with his legs spread open, messy hair and the hair on his forehead was so long it covered his eyes. He looks dirty and his body was covered in filth.
Contrary to this bitter experience, he was singing happily. Laughing while singing, making this scene looks strange.
When Wei Chi Li knew that this was a person, she was no longer nervous. Just as she was about to take a step forward, a few strong winds rushed over, attacking her vital points continuously. Wei Chi Li evade on the spot hurriedly, her hair being blown by the wind.
“Not dead, not dead, hahahaha!” That man stopped singing, started looking up the sky and laughed out loud.
Wei Chi Die ran a few steps subconsciously, shielding in front of Wei Chi Li and lowered her voice: “Could it be that this man is a lunatic? Moreover, he has such a high-level martial arts skill.”
Wei Chi Li stiffened her body and stared at the person’s movement, nodded. This person’s martial arts were enigmatic and could kill people using internal force with his bare hands. This was a very high-level skill.
“Excuse me, are you Lord Yang Zheng?” Wei Chi Li probed.
“Steamed buns, steamed buns, steamed buns!” That man suddenly twisted frantically, clattering with the heavy chains, “Yang Zheng bring me steamed buns!”
Wei Chi Die turned her head in disgust, avoiding the dust that he has flung up.
Wei Chi Li suddenly felt dispirited. If this person has really gone mad, it would be useless even they have found him. But just in case, she suddenly has an idea. She turned her head and said to Wei Chi Die: “Why did Lord Zhou let us find a lunatic?”
Wei Chi Die was taken aback and then continued naturally: “Yes, with him like this, what can he understand?”
The singing stopped abruptly.
Suddenly a huge clattering sound rang, and the noise caused headaches. Yang Zheng struggles to stand up and pounced forward. A face squeezed between the 2 railings.
His face looks very terrifying with a horizontal hideous scar across it, but his eyes were very crazy, and his lips were trembling, wanting to say something but hesitated, frightening Wei Chi Die.
“Hahaha, liar, liar! No steamed buns!” The expression on Yang Zheng’s face turned strange again. He struggles while laughing.
Wei Chi Li looked at the door worriedly, for fear of attracting the guards here, hence she took out the set of keys and inserted it into the keyhole.
Wei Chi Die quickly held her down: “What are you doing, beware of the danger.”
“We have to control him, otherwise there is no way of communicating.” Wei Chi Li said, then suddenly uses extremely low voice and said in Wei Chi Die’s ear.
“He is pretending to be crazy.”
[T/L Note]: (21/12/2020) is The Dōngzhì Festival or Winter Solstice Festival and is one of the most important Chinese Festival. Traditionally, the Dongzhi Festival is also a time for the family to get together. One activity that occurs during these get-togethers (especially in the southern parts of China and in Chinese communities overseas) is the making and eating of tangyuan (湯圓) or balls of glutinous rice, which symbolize reunion. In northern China, people typically eat dumplings on Dongzhi.
The traditional East Asian calendars divide a year into 24 solar terms. Dōngzhì, is the 22nd solar term, and marks the winter solstice. It often refers in particular to the day when the Sun is exactly at the celestial longitude of 270°. In the Gregorian calendar, it is usually around 21st or 22nd December.
[PS. was supposed to update this on 21st of dec, but, network went out so could not post it up]