A Mistaken Marriage Match2:Generation of Military Counselors Chapter 29 Part2
A Mistaken Marriage Match2: Generation of Military Counselors
Chapter 29 Part 2 The Elite Force
THUD…. THUD …..THUD….
Three thuds until it faded away. At the place where Gu Yu stood were three crescent-shaped marks of concealed weapons. The weapons were embedded straight at the back of the chair, a clear skilled technique. There’s a dew outside the blade and the exposed side of the blade was violently shaking. The humming noise of the concealed weapon showed how much strength it possessed. If it is injected into the body, the consequences cannot be imagined.
This alerted the few people on the platform and they all looked around. This was such a spacious place and was not easy to find for it is so hidden. But also in front of them were hidden weapons quietly placed, which displayed then that the martial arts skills of this person must be very advanced.
The distant treetops shook lightly and a small crowd of dark black shadows lightly leaped under the treetops. Their speed was fast and the steps were very lithe. Best estimate, there were about more than twenty people and their faces were all covered with the hooded face guards. Their whole body were generally hidden as if in darkness. When they moved forward, they did not even make a sound. Such a ghost-like flashing figures and only within a moment, they already flushed themselves to the central training ground. Gu Yun marveled at their martial arts skill and style. They were like Ninja assassins.
Su Ling took Gu Yun behind him to protect her and the Chixue sword in his hands was already exuding the faint red glow. Gu Yun could feel his whole body muscles tensed and just by looking at these men in black hoods she knew the battle tonight would be difficult.
The men in black clothing stood firm on the training ground. Under the black hoods that covered their faces, one can only see the pairs of cold and gloomy eyes. Their stares were straight and directed at Gu Yun and they did not hide the purpose of their actions.
Just as the sharp night air suddenly stopped, the windless night atmosphere became tense. Under the platform, two sides stood confronting each other. Nobody moved to break the elusive balance in between. Han Shu growled, “Who are you? Dare to run into the General’s Office!”
One of the men in black suddenly stepped forward and made a hand signal pointing at Gu Yun. With the hand signal, the twenty black-clad men quickly divided into threes and surrounded the high platform’s front, left and right. The soldiers holding the torches drew their weapons and were about to line up but a touch of silver flew across at the first movement of the several soldiers and they instantly fell. The weapon was a crescent sharp knife and it nailed through their necks into the ground!
Su Ling’s eagle eyes darkened. The black-clad men were highly trained therefore the ordinary soldiers holding the torches could only be killed to death. Since there was no fire and the lighting was dark in this kind of environment, to deal with them was even more difficult.
Su Ling called, “Stand back!”
The soldiers who were preparing the next attack heard the command and stopped immediately then trotted back ten feet away. Several soldiers pulled down the body of the fallen and quietly took him to the camp five miles away.
The black-clad men knew the gridlock and refused to compromise. The leading man raised his right hand but Su Ling didn’t wait for him and ranged under his command. He got a hold of the Chixue sword and with one leap from the platform, put Gu Yun behind Su Ren and said,
“No matter what, Ren, you protect her.”
Han Shu saw Su Ling and also followed close behind him into the fray. Because they launched the initiative to attack, the black-clad people failed to successfully surround them.
The two men’s martial arts were superior, especially Su Ling in particular. Red blood was dripping in every stroke of his sword. The men in black resisted with all their might and saw that the situation must be reversed. Another hand signal was gestured and more than ten men in black attacked Su Ling and Han Shu while several men leaped towards the platform!
Su Ren and Su Yu, got on the left and the right to protect Gu Yun, but then there was a sudden pain on their shoulders. In the next moment, they were unable to move. Standing behind them was Su Yan!
Su Yan’s big hands were on the shoulders of the two men as he whispered, “You two stay!”
Su Yan at that time actually hit their acupuncture points? Su Yu growled,
” Uncle Yan! You let us go!” These men in black were menaces. Qing Mo’s injury just got better and in the end, how can they take that risk!
Compared with Su Yu’s anxiousness, Su Ren was obviously much calmer. The black people were ominously fierce but with Qing Mo and Su Yan’s power was not also easy to deal with!
As for Gu Yun, she looked lightly at the side to welcome Su Yan’s provocative eyes. The two people sat on the chair steadily, one on the left and another on the right side not looking away from each other. Gu Yun snorted. So they wanted to compel her to begin right? Since there was no activity for a long time and she estimated that the sword was bored also! Su Ling, can’t blame her. She was just “being, forced to free it!”
Under the platform, the men in black wrestled for their lives as Su Ling and Han Shu do their best to minimize the enemies’ techniques. The three old men standing, sat back down and made it clear, they had no intentions of helping. Su Yu tried his luck and wanted to break through the acupuncture points several times, but it’s basically useless. Seeing Gu Yun surrounded by men in black closing in, Su Ren can only eagerly shout,
“Qing Mo, watch out!”
The swift and fierce black pupil has swept towards the wooden box of the cold sword. Gu Yun gave it a thought but her appearance didn’t give any hints as to what she was thinking. Then she narrowed her eyes, spread open her palm and whispered, “Bing Lian!”
It was a chilly like chant in a whisper. The summoning voice was not high. At the same time, a dazzling white light simultaneously flew out of the tightly closed wooden box. The moment the silver-white sword blade slipped out of its sheath, it sent out a dragon roar. The people who heard the sound were spellbound. The people had not even got back their composure when the sword already fell straight into her palm that was spread open.
“It’ her.. it is she ..she is – -”
Su Yan was so surprised and he had forgotten to say anything else. The Bing Lian sword together with the Chixue sword have protected the Su family for a millennium. According to the family history record, the two swords can move along with the master’s mind. What a pity they saw two Su guardian daughters-in-law but were unable to achieve the sword’s ability to move along with the heart. The Bing Lian just guarded and protected them all the time but unexpectedly this feeble slender little girl had this ability.
The Bing Lian sword unsheathed and the air around was frozen for a moment. The overbearing cold air was encroaching upon the human hearts and lungs. But under this atmosphere, there were three people who were very excited. It’s no wonder the race emblem recently often changed. The Bing Lian sword was excited to demonstrate their prowess together and they were seeing it for the first time.
This strange cold air, the clad men in black also all felt it. She stood sideways with a hand grasping the weapon as the swift and aggressive momentum was pressing. Although silent and motionless, it was also both in an attack and defensive mode. This time, the men clad in black did not know where to start.
If her body was healthy, Gu Yun liked attacking than defending; but today her old wound had not recovered and did not dare to act rashly. Gu Yun did not dare to slightly let up even when the sword shook in her hand. The men in black’s every action and every movement did not escape her sharp eyes. In here, she cannot refuse but to be in a deadlock. The men in black under the platform were already losing their fight against Su Ling and Han Shu. If the black-clad men did not prepare to kill soon, this would give Su Ling enough time to kill his opponents and save Gu Yun. When that happens, they will most likely not have any chance of completing their task. The clad men in black exchanged looks and decided to rally together to attack thus the platform instantaneously became murderous.
The enemy did not make their first move. To feel the opposite party’s intentions, Gu Yun fiercely jerked to the right. The longsword brushed up against two of the men in black. The cold silver sharp blade suddenly came towards them and they both dodged but the fierce had already pierced a chest. The burst of cold wind afterward made the wound bleed out profusely.
The other black people were in for a surprise for the fast moves of the good Ling Li’*s sword! *(ancient ice sword ) Gu Yun suddenly exposed the hand with the sword and the men in black were scared for a moment. At the same time, they became more cautious.
The high-profile men in black all of a sudden rushed again to surround Gu Yun. She struggled to deal with them as her chest started to hurt. The most outrageous result could be that the wound would tear again. There was a little leak and she could feel the warm blood. Under each of the heart’s contraction, the pain caused her to break out in a cold sweat. Even so, Gu Yun dared not show a trace of pain on her face, because these men seemed to be trained killers. Once they saw that she had a chest injury, they would focus on her chest and she would lose!
As soon as Su Yan patted his thigh, he kindly noted, “Played well!” The Bing Lian judgment was good! Su Yan looked ecstatic. Gu Yun actually wanted to shout a curse word. Did they think they were watching the monkey play! Her chest would have a tearing pain if she was to move ruthlessly even more.
“That little girl is good, very good!” Su elders were all smiles until their eyes were narrowed to a squint. Her swordsmanship style was very special and it did not have the gaudy movement. The style was elegant. Each sword punctured were all quick and ruthless. The build-up coordinate was also extremely tacit in sync with the Ling Li sword. It was very good!
Su Quan and Su Yan’s judgment and mind all fell on Gu Yun. They have not paid even slight attention to what was happening under the platform. After seeing Gu Yun’s situation, Su Ling’s complexion began to change. He blocked all the men in black and killed them violently with his sword! He didn’t simply kill but got angry!
Su Qing noticed Su Ling’s behavior and stopped to ask in a low voice, “Why is Ling like this?”
Su Yu no matter what, even if he cannot move, he kept resisting. Even if the effort became strenuous, he fought to attend to Gu Yun. He knew it will be gradually hard for Gu Yun to defend so he coolly replied, “Her chest has just suffered a knife stab, now the wound definitely will split you look at it yourself.”
What is it? Ruthlessly patting Su Quan, Su Yan “Cursed the guy, why didn’t you say that!” “He just said she is in bad health, turns out to be injured. “Have you ever find out?” Su Ren declined to comment. Su Yan quickly unlocked Su Ren and Su Yu’s acupuncture points and the tall figures immediately joined the fray. The outcome of the fight was decided soon.
The pain was killing me! Gu Yun held down her chest. The under wrap felt soaked and bouts of blackness overcame her. If it was not for the Ling sword that was supporting her, she would have already fallen. Gu Yun closed her eyes, hoping that throbbing heart pain would be over.
Not taking into account the original cold night wind that blew on the body, her four limbs were ice-cold. Gu Yun’s body cannot help but shiver and in the next moment, she had fallen in a warm embrace.
“Mo Er! How are you?” Panic breathing sprayed on her face. Her ears were already familiar with that growl. It is him–Su Ling. Gu Yun did not answer him, but her beautiful facial features virtually wrinkled. The chest expressed out blood stains which made Su Ling scared and anxious, “I’ll take you back!” The hand gathered around her waist and was about to hold Gu Yun when she suddenly tightly tugged at his sleeve. With effort, she said softly, “It hurts.” She would survive from the pain since it was nothing compared to the last time. Ignoring this, she knew those soldiers would quickly come back and tonight’s test cannot be stopped!
What? Su Ling thought of her pain and did not dare to make any sudden movement. Su Qing patted Su Ling on the shoulder and said, “Ling, let her go, let patriarch take her pulse.”
Su Ling gave them a guarded stare. They were the men who sat on the sidelines and aggravated her injury! The little girl’s face was as white as a sheet and she had irregular breaths. Su Yan began to worry. His body was like being pierced by thorns, Su Ling said, “Go ahead, let’s do what can be done for her now, let’s get it done.”
Su Qing went to Gu Yun’s side. Su Ling thought and gently lifted her wrist and passed it to the front of Su Qing.
Taking Gu Yun’s slim wrist, Su Qing’s face slightly changed. This child was actually injured in the heart! Then she was in great pain. Earlier, she must have gone all out and never took the fight softly.
Su Qing did not talk for a long time. Su Ling couldn’t help but ask,
“How is she?”
Taking his hand back, Su Qing replied in a low voice, “She did not injure her heart, just the flesh is suffering.”
Flesh wound does not hurt? Gu Yun finally got through the first wave of pain with difficulty and opened her eyes to hear this irritating comment. The grasped in her hand was crazy. Su Qing suddenly held her wrist. Her left hand was lifted and her palm was instantly connected to his palm. There was a transfer of warmth from that hand to hers. She hated that hand and wanted to withdraw. But the strange thing was, no matter how hard she wanted to move her hands, she couldn’t seem to break away from his hold. But this time, a tepid warm current poured into her slowly from that palm. Gu Yun was quickly dazed and felt some wave of particles moving like a heat burning. She was staring at the body on her side, a thin old person. He had fluid tranquility and his breath was rather harmoniously peaceful. What was going on here?
Gu Yun felt a thin current flowing. It flowed along her arm into her chest. She could feel the still throbbing heart being surrounded by a wave of heat and then the pain was no longer so unbearable.
Su Ling’s worried heart was relinquished. To protect the heart’s arteries, not every person had the ability to accomplish it and for some people, the power was not sufficiently profound. When this power was released to save a person, someone would also lose in return. The old patriarch was willing to part this power to help someone. Su Ling was naturally thankful to see it happened.
“General, how to dispose of these people?” Under the high platform, Han Shu had the men in black tied and was waiting for directions on how to deal with them.
“Shut them inside a dark room.” Su Ling said. Behind him was Su Ren, he said, “These people you find out who their master is!”
“Yes.” These people’s martial art tricks were unusual. Qing Mo was their target. Su Ren’s heart had been faint with the direction. Su Ren took the troops holding the men in black to leave. Su Qing also slowly withdrew his hand.
He withdrew his open hand and that warmth had dissipated. Her chest wound was still in pain, but just as Su Qing had said, only the flesh was in pain, not the heart. The feeling of throbbing pain in the heart was reduced by many. This too was really mysterious! Was it the so-called—internal cultivation? Her heart was full of questions. Gu Yun quietly observed the side of the old man. He smiled back at her and he did not shy away from her eyes. Her keen observation on him did not seem to work, instead, he just smiled faintly, not unusual.
Su Quan’s smiling face came up and kindly asked, “Girl, feeling better and does it hurt?” Gu Yun was stunned and instinctively took a step back.
“Su Yu. You still are frozen in here! Come and look for a physician!” Su Yan’s big voice roared that it startled Gu Yun
“Oh.” Su Yu’s embarrassed face went down from the high platform and then looked back at the crowd tending Gu Yun. Elder brother’s hand was steadily holding around her waist and Su Yu’s heart had a trace of sourness. She would eventually become his sister-in-law and could also be a big sister. Focusing on the task at hand, Su Yu sped up his steps.
Just moments ago he was yelling at Su Yu, the next moment he grasps the hands of Gu Yun, now incomparably temperate and with flattering and smiling voice, he said, “Not comfortable? Why did you not say earlier? Where else are you uncomfortable, tell Yan Su!”
“Stop!” Gu Yun felt a chill from the soles of her feet shoot straight up. It was originally a pain in the heart and now her head began to hurt too! Can you imagine a mountain of an old man coming to you inquiring about your well-being in every possible way and maintain your cool? The key point was, just moments ago, they saw you in danger but did nothing. Gu Yun pulled back her hand with a face of dislike and said, “You’d better stay away from a distance!”
Puzzled, Su Yan asked. “Why?”
“I get goose bumps.” She had always been respectful, but in the face of this strange group of strange old men, her cultivation was really being challenged. Su Yan looked embarrassed to stand there and he dared not roar at Gu Yun and only glared at Su Ling.
Since Su Yan felt regretful for his earlier actions and Su Ling had ignored his glare, Gu Yun’s face looked better. She then said, “I need to drill what Han Shu needs to do.”
“I will send you back to dress the wounds.”
Gu Yun would also like to say something, but after looking at Su Ling, that serious look on his face suggested it was wiser to just shut up.
Looking up and glancing at the dark sky, Gu Yun said to Han Shu, “When the soldiers come back later, let them jump into the pit again and continue to run. This time eliminate thirty, then next round eliminate forty until I return.”
“Why?” She wanted to choose and he had to do nothing but just to let the soldiers continue to run? What’s the point? Just to eliminate people?
Breathing slightly in a low voice, she said, “You need to let me explain it to you?”
Su Yan said impatiently, “Girl that can be done but your wound is your first priority!”
“Do as she says!”
“Yes.” Su Ling ordered that Han Shu, even if the heart was unwilling or dared not say anything, just only receive the order. Gu Yun was about to turn around when she suddenly felt her waist tightened and her feet dangling, she was picked up and carried by Su Ling. Gu Yun uneasily whispered, “Put me down, I can walk by myself.”
“No.” Su Ling would not listen to her and continued the long walk back to General Manor.
Three old men glanced at each other, ran to see what was “abandoned” in the wooden box of Ling Li. After looking, three people raise their faces with a gratifying smile.
“You put me down!” Being hugged in this way by someone made her uncomfortable.
“If you dare moved again I’ll tamper with your acupuncture points!” In the past, he did not know this woman he was carrying can twist around like a mudfish.
“You dare!” her mouth can only say but Gu Yun has been smart enough to stop twisting from side to side. Su Ling was a boorish fellow and there was no guarantee that he’s not really going to tamper her acupuncture points.
That’s it! She suddenly turned to become a “law-abiding person”. This person actually rarely settles down, but quickly stopped moving. This put Su Ling in a good mood and his lips and eyebrows were also infected with a faint smile,
“The dare has gone, Mo Er?”
Mo Er? Gu Yun’s strong heart at this moment twisted into a ball and the chill of cold air made her hair stand up in every pore. Then she said solemnly, “Su Ling, there’s some matter that we must discuss well.”
Easily persuaded, Su Ling replied,
“Don’t call me Mo Er, I don’t like it.” The correct term was disgusted! Su Ling had better not disgust her when he calls and she cannot end like a fine compromise. Her heart cannot bear this kind of stimulation.
Su Ling was silent for a moment and asked, “What do you want me to call you? “
Gu Yun! But she could not tell him, Thinking for a bit, Gu Yun finally said, “Qing Mo.”
Su Ling frowned, “I have to call your name with the surname?” Actually, he felt awkward calling her Mo, but he wanted to call her differently than the others so he called her Mo Er. He couldn’t call her “darling girl” and he was reluctant to call her like others who called her Qing Mo.
A name with a surname, now what was wrong with that? Gu Yun did not understand why Su Ling had such an opinion. Anyway, if this really was absolutely unacceptable to him, she hesitated for a moment, Gu Yun finally said, “Call me – Yun!”
Yun? Su Ling looked at her quizzically, Gu Yun freely explained, “This was the name my eldest sisters called me when I was little.”
Though alone with Qing, she was called by that name and while for Qing, that was indeed her name. If people heard it, it can be explained that it was when she was young.
So that’s how it was. “Yun……” assembled and parted with the wind, not depended on indistinctly meaning? Yun this character, she heard countless people say it before but it never gave her any special feeling. However, tonight hearing the deep voice in her ear slowly read out the word, her heart was as if it was a piece of fluff gently gliding like hemp. It was very strange.
She slightly looked up, Su Ling’s face of fortitude was on the horizon. He didn’t look like Prime Minister Lou Xi Yan, that looks scholarly and seductive, but he looked tense all day and that face always looked very serious. Especially those dark eagle eyes, and every time she was with him, she had a feeling of being caught in a deep pool.
Su Ling was aware of Gu Yun looking at him. He slightly bowed his head to see Gu Yun’s straight bright eyes staring back at him. Su Ling’s heart knotted, she was looking at him? Those black eyes were suddenly embarrassed, Gu Yun slightly turned and pretended nothing happened.
Su Ling looked at the expression of the cramped woman in his arms. His lips unconsciously delivered a smile and there no slowing down in his stride as the strength in his hands tightened around her.
The two remained silent all the way. Soon, they reached Yi Tian Yuan and already waiting was the physician. He greeted quickly, “Xia Guan, General Su.”
Su Ling passed the physician and brought Gu Yun into the chamber. He put her on the bed and pulled up the thin quilt cover for her. He returned back to the physician and said, “Her wound might have reopened. Quickly give her diagnosis and treatment.”
The physician quickly replied, “Yes.”
This young girl at present, although had no identity or grade, her sister was the Emperor’s mistress and another was the Prime Minister’s wife. Looking at the Su General’s nervous appearance, she most likely will be the mistress of the General’s Office. He absolutely can’t afford to offend the girl.
Su Ling went out of the House to see Su Yu. He was about to leave and he whispered, “Yu, you go to the Ministry of Torture and let Dan Yulan deploy more staff to look after Ao Jie.” Five days after the execution of Ao, it was too much of a coincidence!
“The better.” Su Yu muffled a cry as if it were to escape Su Ling and trotted away. Sitting down on a stone bench, thinking of Su Yu’s back as he fled, Su Ling, wondered why he’s in a hurry to leave.
It was peaceful for a while until Su Yan’s tall figure came out from Su Yi Tian Yuan. Su Ling did not give him a glimpse.
Knowing he was wrong, Yan Hu sat down opposite Su Ling and said, “I did not know she had injuries on her body. You have given her so much authority and you were doting on her, certainly, I should have not hindered.” Su Ling stood far off and didn’t want to take part of his nonsense.
A little self-aware and apologetic, Su Han Yu said, “Ling, Bing Lian did not make a bad judgment. You also selected very well.”
Yan could not make out Su Ling’s expression in the dark night but could only hear his voice in a deep chill saying, “I don’t want her to know about Bing Lian’s matters.”
Su Yan indifferently laughed, “OK, I will not say, will not say.” The girl Bing Lian selected is good, looks beautiful, and is rare. ” The sword itself was satisfied and really happy. Su Yan’s mouth perfunctory answered but Su Ling did not take this matter to heart.
The morning light was passing through the dense foliage, crumbling down on the green grass. The wind was blowing gently, the plants in the courtyard were blooming, but Su Ling was on a bleak and did not appreciate the beautiful mood around him. Just when his patience was almost exhausted, the door finally opened.
Su Ling looked up anxiously and asked, “How is she?”
The physician wiped his forehead from thin sweats, replied, “Su General, rest assured, Qing girl’s injuries were not serious, but she just needs little rest. If the wound was not torn, she is just fine.” Su Ling nodded. When he was about to go in, the physician suddenly said somewhat hesitantly, “Qing girl said, please don’t go in.”
And why? Su Ling glared at him but the doctor quickly shook his head and said, “Xia Guan doesn’t know, I am leaving to boil her medicine,” and he did not wait for Su Ling to speak again and quickly left.
Su Ling stared at the closed-door and did not understand what Yun was hiding. He grabbed the door handles but just stood there for a long period without opening the door.
Gu Yun didn’t make him wait too long as the door once again opened. By the door, stood a body in a black dress, long hair tied with vigorously. The black dress against her skin looked paler and that pair of sharp eyes were full of wit. He acknowledged that such a valiant was beautiful but she was dressed up for something. What should he do?
“Where are you going?” Looking at her dressed, Su Ling already had a bad premonition about this. Sure enough, Gu Yun’s face calmly replied,
“To the training field. “
Su Ling, through gritted teeth, said, “The competition is so far.” Once again he deeply felt that giving her that training was a very bad decision. He was very certain now that in the future all of her time will be spent on training.
“Won’t do.” This time, Gu Yun insisted, “This day is not better than the night with Bing Lian!” He didn’t think she let the soldiers run the whole night just to make them have fun, did he?
Su Ling took a deep breath and patiently said, “Whatever you want, you can tell Han. Let him go do the regulations and monitor on the line. He can choose people too… “
Gu Yun shook her head, “He can’t.”
Raising a rather provocative smile, Gu Yun replied, “He does not know what kind of soldier I really want.”
Su Ling’s brows were becoming more and more tightly knit, Gu Yun chuckled and asked, “You thought the reason I let them run the whole night was an inexplicable excuse, right?”
It was very strange. He had asked her how to choose men and she just laughed and didn’t answer. This got his curiosity up last night. In addition, shooting the feather had little meaning and the other exercises were really nothing special. What does she want to do?
Out the door, she was standing side by side with him and made a gesture. Gu Yun in a good mood said, “Let’s go and have a good look.”
She seldom had this playful look and was really cute but if she didn’t ask to go to the training field, he would be happier.
Su Ling’s ice cold face stared at her and Gu Yun reluctantly said, “Don’t worry, your old man is pretty powerful. I feel fine this morning.” She never knew the so-called “ancient” skills turned out to have so much power in it. She had always base things on practicality and aggressive efforts. Focusing on martial skills like this, she really didn’t know how to come into that ‘state of being’. On another day, she will find the white-bearded old man.
Her face was still not very good under the sun, but her brows really looked better than a few days ago. Su Ling was compelling her to rest because his wish was to not exhaust her. On the other hand, her refusal made her feel she was being disobedient. Su Ling sighed to compromise, “Well, let’s try. If you feel uncomfortable, we will take a break immediately.”
Gu Yun laughed heartily and replied, “You’re worried about your soldiers.” She really knew how to keep people in suspense. Su Ling shook his head and thought it was funny but just let it go.
When the two people were back on the training field, the sun had been completely out. Under the bright sunshine, inside the huge puddle was a group of clay packed soldiers. No one was moving and the group had wooden expressions plastered on them.
Folding her hands over her chest, Gu Yun asked with a faint smile, “What is going on?”
Han Shu took one look at her eyes and in a bad tone replied, “According to your orders, mud pond!” She thought they had been running all night and were about to die.
Regretting? Why did it become like this? Gu Yun gave a clear smile and said. “Get them out of the pond.”
Just hearing her voice they already went numb. All the youths looked to her, with faces covered with mud and Gu Yun almost couldn’t recognize who they were.
Gu Yun smiled and looked at them. The quagmire people had forgotten their manners, like a wicked tiger’s eye stubbornly glaring at Gu Yun, wishing one could scratch her several nips. They climbed the quagmire after standing there overnight and she … she actually crisply slept and refreshed.
The discontent was really big. They were not able to even crawl a moment ago and now they have to climb out of the quagmire. The morning sun shone on them. You could still see faint white steam which showed how cold the water was.
Gu Yun seemed to enjoy their full hatred look. She looked casual and smiled, “Loosen the sandbags and line up over there.” The eyes that were staring at Gu Yun also moved.
No matter how dissatisfied their hearts were, they would only obey. While the sandbags were taken out, there was no sense of relief. Their clothing and hair were still dripping with mud, their clothes were wet and dry, their bodies were now hot and cold as the mud and clothes were pasted to their skin. They were sticky, wet, and cold, but they had no strength to even refuse. Now the only thing left to support them was perhaps their own willpower.
They trotted to the training field and lined up at the opposite side. Gu Yun went straight and said, “Out of one hundred people last night, your endurance and your physical strength was very good. Now you are able to rest a burning joss stick time (2 hours), for one last test, I hope you can get through.”
Tortured throughout the night. It was already expected Gu Yun would not let them off easy, so when she said that there was the next test, there’s no sense of surprise. They just wanted to rest now. As soon as they heard Gu Yun’s voice, many officers and men just sat on the ground or simply lied down as if their hands and feet were not their own.
Gu Yun smiled and said nothing. Let them sit, lie down, lie down.
Yu Shijun replied, “Yes.”
“The things? Did you get them ready?”
“Give it to them.”
After a while, everyone heard footsteps running and they were handed out a crossbow. Many people were forced to sit straight and began to study the hand weapons. There were more people who were not too tired compared to those that wouldn’t move.
Gu Yun always silently watched the group of soldiers collapsed. She watched Yu Shijun command when they moved into the middle training field target.
Su Ling curiously asked, “What is this?”
Gu Yun mysteriously smiled, “You will know later.”
In the middle of a distance, there were ten small tables and on each table were eight targets drawn. The ten tables were placed on the training field scattered in different places. As a whole, there were a total of eighty targets.
Everything was ready. Gu Yun shouted, “Line up.”
Even if their whole body was dead tired like they would break into many pieces, even if they wanted to sleep forever, they were soldiers and as a soldier, there was absolutely no reason for disobedience. Their ‘doubled speed’ was slower than usual but this group of the elite still managed to neatly line up. Gu Yun did not blame them and her cold voice said,
“Place all the crossbows on your side, without my order you are not allowed to touch it.”
Most crossbows were on the ground by their side and only a few soldiers put down the crossbows in hand. Gu Yun, while they were all standing, went on,
“The next test is to test your crossbow proficiency, your orientation ability, and physical coordination. You see now above each table, there are ten crossbow arrows, numbered one to ten on the tail. You’ll be shooting sequentially. Each table around has eight targets, respectively due East, South, West, and North, Southeast, Northeast, Southwest, Northwest of eight directions. I will casually call out any of the ten directions and your archery targets must follow my directions. After I finished giving the cue, all the arrows must be launched out.”
“Do you understand?”
Whether or not they really understood, Gu Yun said the second plan, “First group of ten, who’s first?”
” I.” Ge Jingyun first came out.
“I.” Lou Yan Nham was next.
” I. “
Soon there were enough people. General Su never lacked warriors and that she always knew. Her eyes swept across Leng Xiao and Liu Xing, both of them did not volunteer in the first group. Leng Xiao was a cautious and calculating man, and Liu Xing was a small smart boy. She guessed Leng will volunteer in the second group while Liu will wait until the last group’s race.
Ten people picked up a crossbow and walked over next to the table where the short arrows were. Gu Yun squinted at the sun rising and said, “All face due East.” Ten people then turned immediately to the direction where the sun rises.
“Ready.” Gu Yun gave the order and they also picked up the first of the ten short arrows then loaded them on the crossbow.
“West.” Her voice dropped. The ten men pointed towards the West to shoot an arrow and all got it right the first time.
“The Northwest.” Gu Yun was almost attached to say the second track but this time the shooters’ arrows were neither fast or slow and deviations began to appear.
“South, Southeast, Northeast, Southwest, West, and South, the Northwest and Northeast.”
Gu Yun’s shouting had been fast and her pauses were only enough time for the marksman to load and shoot. If the direction was wrong, there would not be enough time to respond and the next direction would have already come out. Su Ling seemed to somehow understand now the intentions of Gu Yun why she let them run throughout the night because now was their most tired moment. The soldiers needed to be able to identify their direction within a short amount of time. Not only did that require willpower but also their brain and the need to be absolutely flexible. To select a crossbow, rather than long arrows as competition tool, putting short arrows to crossbow spent more strength than long arrows.
The shout out of ten directions was finished but some arrows had not even been used on the table. Launching was completed and each group had a soldier, holding down one by one in the order view. To identify the ten arrows’ owner in the back was a little confusing if the arrow was not numbered, it was really not clear.
Quickly –the results were announced.
“Six, three pairs.”
“In the seven-five.”
“Eight, a pair.”
“A pair?” That direction was only from the very beginning right? Gu said, “All middle and right column, to the right side of the collection.
A total of three people from that first group, Ge Jingyun, and Lanham and there was a tall man. Gu Yun’s attention was not on her previous cadets, but her eyes fell onto the soldier on the right. He was not tall and his head was always slightly lowered. He had very dark skin and this person did not seem to be the least bit out-of-place as a whole. Gu Yun stared at him for a long time but he did not raise his head.
Gu Yun called and asked, “First on the right, what’s your name?”
Hearing the sound of Gu Yun, he just slowly lifted his head. Gu Yun finally saw his appearance. He was around thirty years old. His features were ordinary and if you have to say some special words, his eyes were very bland. Yes, light. In this group of elite division, she had seen too much. Tempered or bold, strong or proud of the look, clear aloof eye. That look, a look like he had no desire. This was the first time she had ever seen it. But she believed this was only an appearance, because if he so desired nothing then they would not have this opportunity to meet.
As Gu Yun continued to explore his eyes, the man again slightly lowered his head and replied, “Shi Hu**.” (** meaning stone tiger)
“You also pass.” The word got out, not only the man was stunned, others began whispering with each other. For a long time, the man replied in a low voice,
“The rest of the group may return to camp.”
Gu Yun said to the six still standing straight in the same position motionless. Her heart already started to become disgruntled. In a calm voice with no trace of anger, “What do you have to say?”
An evening tossing about had arrived with great difficulty to this step. Everybody did not want to be eliminated. Standing in the middle, a soldier took the lead, “I simply have not proofread the crossbow with the good accurate heart, therefore only then can shoot, if ……”
“All person’s weapon are the same, why can others do fine, why do other’s crossbow have the accurate heart?” Gu Yun’s ice-cold voice interrupted his speech. Her cold gaze swept around the soldiers who were on the training ground and were already utterly exhausted but still participated in the test. She said without the slightest of pity, “being a soldier, the weapon is your life. Attaining the weapon that moment ago was supposed to be inspected but what at that time were you all doing? If you are not good at weapon control, what can you control?”
“Who else has something to say?” A question that was the presence of seven feet tall, no one dared to say, the five who were eliminated just quietly left the competition venues, there was only one man standing there. His eyes were staring straight into Shi Hu and said indignantly, “I will not leave without saying what I wanted to say. Why can Shi Hu stay behind?”
Gu Yun was not angry this time, turning her head to Shi Hu, “Then Shi Hu, you tell him, why do you get to stay? “
Shi Hu looked up, facing Gu Yun with a faint smile in the eyes, under the heavy heart, Qing Mo was not only mean during training but those eyes were also very toxic. After a sigh, the Stone Tiger whispered, “’I did not check my weapons, so I do not know if there is a problem, but after the first shot of the arrow, there is a deviation. I found the problem. During the second arrow shooting, I made the adjustment. I aimed at the bulls-eye as the target and calculated how much deviation between the place of the arrow and the bulls-eye were. Then after the deviation was taken into account, I finally got the arrows in the right positions.”
Shi Hu stated things lightly and Gu Yun also didn’t embarrass him. In a cold voice with some provocation, “Who has the ability to load marksman in such a short period of time and calculated the deviation angle and can accurately hit the position, I let him stay. “
“Is there a problem?”
“Answer me.” She knew they were tough but she will soon let them know what surrendering is!
The matter that was dared to be said what said no matter how the always resounding neat replies were what Gu Yun wanted now.
Gu Yun’s face began to flush because of the sun and she needed to use a lot of strength to speak loudly. Su Ling said in a low voice, “You take a break and let Yu Shijun shout the directions.”
Every time she talked, it pulled into the wound, Gu Yun had indeed started to have discomfort and tried to be brave. She nodded and replied, “That’s good.”
Su Ling waved at Yu Shijun. He stepped forward and in a clear resonant voice cried, “The next group who will take the challenge, please leave ranks!”
Just as expected, Leng Xiao was the first to step forward and soon the next set was ready.
“Preparation!” Yu Shijun in front shout out the cue.
Gu Yun watched the competition under her instructions. Su Ling, suddenly got up and beckoned toward the back of Han Shu. Su Ling asked in a whisper, “Who is Stone Tiger?”
Han Shu paused for a long time then only vaguely said, “He was riding and shooting at the camp as a junior captain three years ago with Northern Qi in the battle. He took five hundred men to raid behind enemy lines. It seemed because he had secretly altered the planned raids by a hundred sticks, it failed. He was transferred to the kitchen. When Qing Mo called for the selection of 30,000 stationed soldiers for the battalion and that anyone can take part, he took the opportunity to join if he can make it to this one.” Who is in the kitchen for three years with such skill?
Standing in the middle was Shi Hu but seemed like he did not exist. The man seemed to be very deeply hidden. His eyebrow squinted in thought for a moment before Su Ling said, “Find out what happened that year.”
Gu Yun’s head turned to Su Ling and smiled, “Why are you so interested in him?”
Su Ling did not deny, “I am very interested. If it had not been for you, I would not have known there to be such a figure hidden in the kitchen.” No wonder she said Han Shu does not know who she wants to have. Ten people for reference, she noted that Shi Hu’s accurate calculations from the outset or that the moment she sent down the crossbows she had been observing them.
Gu Yun eyebrows raise a little, “You’re not going to rob me, are you?”
Looking at how her face displayed unhappiness, Su Ling laughed.
Gu Yun gave him a surprised look. When did he start to laugh like that?
The more than two hundred people and their competition ended too soon. Yu Shijun ran to the two people to report,
Gu Yun whispered, “And why are there still so many?”
He did not think she had been talking to the General, calculating the number of men left, hearing Gu Yun’s comment, Yu Shijun gawked in surprise. There were only one hundred thirty-eight people out of the three thousand people left, this was still too much?
Gu Yun looked over at the sluggish Shijun and took over the stone faces of the one hundred and something people left. She then stood firm in front of them. The group of iron men quickly became anxious, after all, she had to make a decision. They started from yesterday noon and have not eaten nor drunk, let alone rested, now what does she want?
Facing nervous and sad faces, Gu Yun laughed, “You don’t have to strain yourself because the testing for today is over.”
The end? Although it was disappointing in their hearts, they let out a long sigh.
“However,” Gu Yun said one word, everyone’s heart once again hung on their mouth! Gu Yun did not keep them in suspense and kindly explained, “I just need a hundred people. Because you are all excellent, it makes it so hard to choose. So everyone can follow my training but after each training, it is a test. Each one will start with one hundred points and the twenty people with the worst performance, ten points will be deducted. This will be done until we determine who will be left. Do you understand?”
Each time the training would be a test? The real ordeal had just began.
“Understand!” Perhaps it was a roar out of anger, perhaps mourning after the day, all in all, it was very loud.
Gu Yun nodded with satisfaction, “Disband.”
Running throughout the night, their limbs were heavy like lead, foot blisters that were showered with mud and were wet repeatedly. All of them were like wearing a tight armor with sweat streaming down, making a mud road mark. All throughout the day, they were tensed until they blacked out, now relaxed but one just really wanted to lay like the dead on the floor motionless. Towing an exhausted body like an old woman, step by step, moving back gradually.
Gu Yun turned back just in time to see Han’s weird smile on his face.
Han’s smile on his face under the mask, solemnly said, “Do you know what your new training recruits called you behind your back last time?”
Gu Yun didn’t care to look at him. Han Shu being mysterious declared,
Gu Yun scoffed at the guys. She thought that the crowd can come up with something new, so much for the original.
“But this time they’re not going to call you that.”
Gu Yun with a look of interest stood next to Yu Shijun and asked curiously, “Why?”
“Because there is one more appropriate.”
“What is it?”
Han Shu glanced at Gu Yun and laughed, “The leader of the witches!”
“The leader of the witches? “Han Shu, you die!”
Gu Yun grabbed a bundle of short arrows throwing them towards Han Shu. Han was scurrying ahead.
Su Ling laughed and clung to catch up with Gu Yun. Loud curses, wild screams, waves of laughter continued but standing on the training field outside was the face with a solemn look.