Fanfiction: Mo Yuan and Shao Wan - Chapter 5 (Ten Miles of Peach Blossoms 三生三世十里桃花)

Chapter 5

written by kakashi 
edited by JoAnne

Zhe Yan was standing near his hut and greeted Mo Yuan with a nod. It was always hard to read Zhe Yan’s expression or to guess what his intentions were. Mo Yuan had not forgiven him for bringing Si Yin to his school, knowing full well he had to let her in and knowing full well what likely effect the young woman was going to have on him. Zhe Yan enjoyed messing with people's heads far too much.

“Is she here?” the Master of Kunlun Mountains asked the Old Phoenix, even though he already knew the answer. Of course she was. 

Zhe Yan nodded and smiled more broadly. Mo Yuan raised his eyebrows. He did not appreciate that smile at all. But this was Zhe Yan's territory and it was well understood in all the realms that this was neutral ground, so Mo Yuan should be relatively safe here.

Shao Wan stood in the shadows with her back to him, boxing one of the trees. Night was falling quickly now and the darkness seemed to pool and swirl around her like a living creature.

She heard his footsteps and swirled around.
“You bastard,” she snapped, “you killed me!”

Mo Yuan said nothing. His silence was not entirely deliberate, there was a lot he wanted to say. But frankly, her beauty knocked the wind out of him. He had always considered her stunning, but not to this degree. Was it that he had not been able to fully appreciate it before when they were young? Was it because he had changed recently? Or was it she who had changed during her long absence?

Shao Wan was tall for a woman, slender but strong. Her long, midnight blue hair flowed like silk around her and her white, softly glowing skin reminded him of the moonlight on the snowy mountain tops. Even though he could not see them in the dark, he knew that her almond shaped eyes changed color depending on her mood. Her elegant but slightly pointy nose betrayed her difficult character, and at the same time perfected the harmony of her face. And her lips … her lips that said the cruelest, most hurtful things to him had always distracted him the most.

His strange silence gave her pause and she looked at her old enemy with apprehension. What was he up to? Gathering his powers to blast her?

Mo Yuan was dressed in very fine red garb, with an elaborate headpiece… for his wedding, she realized. He was still stiff and stern and pretty like she remembered him … but something was different. She took a step forward and probed deeper. A slow, satisfied smile spread across her face; Mo Yuan was injured. His cultivation was a mess and he had only about half of his normal powers. This would be easy.

Feeling far more confident after her discovery she took another, challenging step towards him.

“I am sorry,” he said very softly.  

Shao Wan laughed. She would not fall for his act. The God of War knew he stood no chance against her in his current state and that was why he tried to appear regretful. How utterly ridiculous, did he think she was stupid? Should she kill him right here and now? She thought about it for a bit, but couldn't make up her mind.

“Care for some wine?” Zhe Yan’s question made both of them jump. He had approached silently and was now shaking three bottles of his famous peach wine.

Shao Wan scowled at him. He had a knack for spoiling her fun and always knew how to distract her with his trickery. He was far more clever about it than Mo Yuan, who had just endlessly bored her with his lectures about laws and rules. The truth was, she had been craving Zhe Yan’s peach blossom wine ever since she woke up. This one even looked like a special vintage. In fact, she saw the dirt on the bottles and knew he had freshly dug them up. Only his finest were kept in the ground. 

“Fine”, she said with a little pout. What fun was revenge when her enemy was in such bad shape anyway? Mo Yuan said nothing. She remembered how much his silences had always infuriated her.

It was getting colder, but Zhe Yan led them to his favorite stone table in the orchard. They sat down. He gave them a bottle each, uncorked his and said: “To old friends.”

Shao Wan snorted. Crazy Phoenix. “To old enemies,” she said instead and uncorked hers. She didn’t consider it necessary to wait for Mo Yuan’s toast and started drinking. She felt like purring, it was that good.

Mo Yuan just sat there cross-legged, all still, not even touching his drink. She threw him a dirty look but he didn’t seem to notice.

“Were you planning something special today?” she challenged him, pointing at his fine clothes.

He looked at her directly then and a strange sensation came over Shao Wan as their eyes met. He wasn't just acting. He was deeply and utterly sorry. For a very brief moment, she wanted to reach out her hand and pat his shoulder to tell him it was alright, she was alive after all and she would kill him quickly, without too much suffering - not at all like he had made her suffer! but she caught herself before her instincts made her do something she’d regret afterwards.

“Nice beard,” she said instead and snickered.

Shao Wan realized that he looked too young for 360’000 years, facial hair or not. It made her curious, but she’d rather bite off her own tongue than ask him about his misfortunes. Still, she kept looking at him. He too had uncorked his bottle now and drank. He always had to overthink everything, the bore, she thought. Why not drink immediately if drinking was clearly what they were going to do? His Adam’s apple bobbed. It was a fine throat … for ripping out.

All of the men she went to school with were far too pretty for her taste. Zhe Yan, a phoenix like her, was the exception, but he wasn’t much into women. The first time she had met Mo Yuan, she had marveled at his unmanly beauty. She was deeply fascinated by how he managed to keep his hair in a bun with no strands out of place, even after their wildest fights. His white silk robe never had a wrinkle or dirt on it, and she came to the conclusion that he diverted part of his powers just for his immaculate appearance. Her desire to ruffle his perfect looks had grown bigger and bigger, but she never succeeded.

Tonight, there was no perfection. For the first time ever, she saw emotions in Mo Yuan's dark eyes. She had planned to scratch them out but she hated to destroy beautiful things, so he might as well keep them. Shao Wan further noticed the tightness of his mouth, betraying his struggle to regain control. He looked uncomfortable in his wedding gown, which must be heavy and stifling. What pleased her the most, though, were two strands of hair that had come undone. She lifted her hand to tug them. And stopped. No. No, no, no. Was she crazy? This was Mo Yuan, the man she hated the most, the man who had killed her.

"Damn Zhe Yan’s wines!" she thought, giggling. This one made her very warm all over. It was so like Zhe Yan to give them something spiked. She needed to find a suitably strong companion for tonight, Shao Wan thought, as soon as possible. 190’000 years was a long time. A very long time. Where to find one though? It always depressed her for days when she misjudged them and they died in her bed.

Very abruptly, Mo Yuan got up. His bottle of wine was empty and the alcohol in his blood made him stagger. He tried to clear his head but failed. How much time had passed? He had to get back to Kunlun to talk to everyone who was waiting there for him.

"They must be worried", he thought, "especially Si Yin. I hope Ye Hua can keep her from coming here. It's too dangerous."

He almost fell when Shao Wan grabbed his hand and pulled him back down. “Where do you think you’re going,” she purred, “I won’t let you off easily, you bastard. You are too weak today, killing you would be no fun. At the very least, you owe me a welcome back party.”

Chapter 6