Fanfiction: Mo Yuan and Shao Wan - Chapter 8 (Ten Miles of Peach Blossoms 三生三世十里桃花)
Chapter 8written by Kakashi
Inputer (dialogue): Miniorchid
Edited by JoAnne
“Ye Hua ...”
“He said not to follow, Qian Qian.”
“Yes, Ye Hua, but he has been gone for …”
“Did he not very clearly say do not follow him?” Ye Hua turned to the anxious Kunlun disciples.
“Yes, Crown Prince,” Die Feng said, eyes downcast. “Shifu said that.”
Ye Hua turned back to his wife. “See? You stay here. He’ll be back soon.”
Ye Hua tried to stand his ground, but he already knew that he was going to lose this argument. Bai Qian was quivering with anxiety, and even though Die Feng and the others would never dare go against him, it was evident to Ye Hua that they, too, were just waiting for an opportunity to rush to Zhe Yan’s Ten Miles of Peach Blossoms to save their Master from whatever he surely did not need saving from.
Mo Yuan was definitely alive. Ye Hua could feel it through their bond, although he could not quite fathom the rather strong emotions he was feeling right now. Often, recently, he wished he did not have this connection or that he would at least know how to shield himself better. Especially when he was in bed with Qian Qian, in the moments he should have enjoyed himself the most, he caught himself wondering whether Mo Yuan felt something too, and he would be distracted by thoughts of how awkward this would get.
Suddenly, he felt his brother was in a lot of pain … Ye Hua barely managed to hide it in time. It didn't last long, but it made him more worried. He thought he had a good reason for not further alarming his wife, and his brother had said not to follow, but maybe it was too selfish of him not to let Bai Qian go? Actually, he should just go himself - but he couldn’t really, not after making his point about 'definitely not going' so strongly.
Having an elder brother like Mo Yuan did not make his life easier, that much was clear.
“How can you just let him shoulder this alone?” Bai Qian snapped at her husband. She was really getting furious. Why was Ye Hua so stubborn today?
“But he said…”
This was ridiculous. He was going to mention Zhe Yan again in a moment and how he’d certainly help if needed.
“Yes, because that is what he does, Ye Hua!” Bai Qian said angrily, “Just like you, he goes and takes everything onto himself! He wouldn’t let Zhe Yan help!”
She felt like crying. Very vividly, she remembered both Mo Yuan and Ye Hua’s lifeless bodies in her arms, her utter helplessness in that situation, and her crushing feeling of loss.
Then she saw Ye Hua flinch.
“Is he in pain?” she asked, her heartbeat quickening in panic.
“I don’t think so, Qian Qian”, Ye Hua said.
It sounded like a lie. The foolish man was probably trying to protect her again. Bai Qian knew that the two brothers shared some special bond, but beyond that she did not understand what was going on between the two. There had been no time to talk about anything.
Between the excitement of watching the preparations for her wedding, their splendid grand wedding itself, the endless congratulatory visits afterwards where Bai Qian had needed to sit still and smile, and her trying to settle into the unfamiliar territory of the Nine Heavens, she had hardly seen Mo Yuan. Ye Hua himself was too darn busy too, and as she knew, worried about too many things that he did not talk to her about.
She could not understand why the twins did not want to spend more time with each other, though - had they not been separated all their lives? Was it not a miracle that after so many millennia, Mo Yuan’s brother had been born? She had said so to Ye Hua and had encouraged him to go visit Mo Yuan (hoping he would take her along - she really missed Kunlun so much!) but Ye Hua had politely, firmly blocked her out.
She'd been so proud and happy on the day of her wedding! Eighty-eight rainbow birds flew above and all of the Nine Heavens had glowed. Her beloved family had been there - even Mi Gu, grinning from ear to ear. Everyone she called a friend had come, and quite a few non-friends, too. (She included most of Ye Hua's family in that category.)
The Kunlun Disciples in their plain white robes had been a bit shy when faced with the splendor of the Heavens and were nearly mute, not even teasing her on her special day. Her heart had been so full of love and joy that she'd even felt like covering the faces of those dear friends with sisterly kisses, but that would have discomfited them even more.
The one, the only dark spot on the day had been Mo Yuan's early departure.
She had served her Shifu tea together with Ye Hua, after serving her groom’s parents, then her own parents, and had bowed to him deeply. That he was back, that he was here, on her happiest day, made her heart burst with joy. He had smiled - she felt like hugging the entire world when he did that - and had congratulated her for finding such a good match in his twin brother.
“Be good, Seventeenth”, he warned her again, jokingly and had given them the mended Soul-Gathering Lamp as bridal present.
She could not spend a lot of time sitting with him, even though she wanted to, and when she had looked for him again much later, he was gone.
She had barely noticed it at the time, too preoccupied with other things to pay much attention, but in the less hectic days that followed her wedding Bai Qian realized that his movements had been too stiff, and that there was a trace of pain in his smile. Later still, she remembered Zhe Yan’s worried glances in Mo Yuan's direction.
Her heart had grown heavier and heavier with each memory. Mo Yuan had not regained his full powers after he came back. And now, he was off fighting someone at least his equal in powers. The whole world had shook earlier!
She looked at Ye Hua again, pleading, and he nodded, in defeat.
“You stay here and guard the Mountain!" she hastily said, “I’m going to help Shifu!"
It was very dark in Ten Miles Peach Blossoms, but the thin moon that had risen above the mountain range cast a feeble light on the pink blossoms.
Mo Yuan was not here. Neither was Zhe Yan.
Someone else was though. Someone who was very angry. Someone who uttered a string of insults involving cutting off male body parts, among other profanities.
Bai Qian stepped deeper into the shadows between the trees, clasping her Jade Purity Fan. Bai Qian squinted hard, but she could not see anything. Her eyes sometimes played tricks on her now that she had taken them back from Su Jin, as if they did not forgive her for being left in that witch's eye sockets for so long.
She opened the Fan, feeling a prickling, unpleasant sensation on her skin as she stepped closer.
She took out a luminous night pearl.
The woman becoming visible in front of her was stark naked and extremely beautiful, with dark hair that flowed around her like a silk veil and white, shimmering, flawless skin. Instinctively Bai Qian took a defensive position, but the tall woman did not attack. She had stopped muttering and was looking at Bai Qian, frowning. She was powerful, Bai Qian felt, a High Goddess like herself. She was also a Demon, and considering what had happened this evening, she was most likely that “old, dangerous life-form” Mo Yuan had warned them about. The one he had killed. This woman did not seem old, though, and she certainly wasn't dead.
"Where is High God Mo Yuan?”, Bai Qian asked, her initial anxiety replacing sudden surprise.
The demon woman’s brow furrowed at the mention of the name.
“What have you done to him?”
"Are you his jilted bride?” The Demon woman’s voice was full of contempt.
"How dare you!”
The woman looked at her with narrowed eyes. She came to a conclusion. “You are his lover?”
Nobody could dishonor her Master like that! Bai Qian swung her Fan and sent a blast of energy at the shameless creature. The Demon Woman was obviously a formidable martial artist. She dodged easily, lazily flicking her hand and directing a blast of her own at Bai Qian, who staggered at the onslaught. Her head rang like a gong, and she realized that she had been too rash.
She did have the woman’s full attention, at least.
“What magical artifact is this?” the Demoness demanded as she pointed at the Kunlun Fan, “I don’t know it.”
Bai Qian pressed her lips together. Did that madwoman think they were going to chat about artifacts now?
Still eyeing the Fan, the Demon Woman stepped closer. Bai Qian noted her feral, musky scent.
“Stay away!” Bai Qian hissed.
“Why, does this orchard belong to you?” the other woman hissed back.
Bai Qian’s heart almost stopped when she saw red cloth scattered on the ground behind the Demon.
“Where is my Shifu!” she shouted.
“Shifu?” the Demon woman continued to look confused. Taking measure of Bai Qian’s clothes and hair, she retorted: “How is he your Shifu? You are no student at Kunlun. He never allowed women there.”
Suddenly, her face changed. Confusion gave way to rage.
“You smell of him, Fox,” she spat, “The scent of that Celestial bastard is all over you. I get it now! He tells you to cross-dress as his student? He has you bow down to him and call “Shifu, Shifu" in his bedroom?” The Demon Woman was shouting now, "You can keep your damn Shifu! Tell that bastard that I will rip his heart out the next time I see him!”
With a last angry howl, she was gone.
Bai Qian cloud jumped back to Kunlun, put her arms around Ye Hua's waist and burrowed her face in his hair. She was shaking with rage.
“Qian Qian,” Ye Hua whispered, holding her arms. "What happened? Are you alright?"
No, she wasn’t alright. She had encountered a naked madwoman and she was deeply disturbed by that meeting. Without fully understanding why, she felt ashamed.
“I saw a Demon High Goddess,” Bai Qian began. "She was very rude.”
“He is back, Qian Qian,” Ye Hua said.
Bai Qian quickly disentangled herself from her husband.
“Where is he? Is he injured? Can I see him?”
“A few scratches at most. He went straight to his meditation cave and sealed himself in. He seemed … “
Ye Hua wasn’t sure how to put it. Mo Yuan had been in a hurry. Ye Hua could have been mistaken, but he thought he smelled peach blossom wine on his brother. He had also looked like he had been spit out by Zhuxian Terrace.
“… angry.” Ye Hua finished his sentence. That, however, had definitely not been all he'd sensed from his twin.