Chapter 86: Meeting Old Friends (4)

Hu Ba’s discolored purple lips spread wide open. He was unable to utter a single word, and his head was clammy with cold sweat. Xu Yangyi calmly walked towards Hu Jiaojiao, and her entire body faintly trembled. Slowly, her hair fell down. 

Clunk… Her handbag, a Hermès handbag, fell on the ground from her five trembling fingers, and both her legs shivered. Watching the slowly walking Xu Yangyi, her face was devoid of blood.

T-T-This was a monster!

Moments ago, there was no one able to sense it deeper than her! Just now… she seemed to be placed at the eye of a hurricane! She even believed herself to have crossed over into one of Master Xing’s blockbuster kungfu movies! [1]

That feeling of believing herself to have died for a split second… was too profound. So profound that as she now watched Xu Yangyi calmly advance, her body began to instinctively tremble! She was terrified to the extreme!

“D-Don’t you come over!” she said shakily. In the last second, she was still yelling angrily to get Xu Yangyi to come, but in the next she even felt the menace of his approach! The crook of Xu Yangyi’s mouth curved, and he sneered, walking forward as before with measured steps.

“Don’t you come! Don’t!”

Thud! Hu Jiaojiao’s back was already leaning against her car. She was genuinely terrified.

“Do you know who my big brother is?!” Xu Yangyi’s shadow became increasingly distinct within her pupils. She was so frightened that she was already rambling in fright, her voice crowingly sharp. “I-I-If you do anything to me, my big brother won’t let you off! In Mingshui Province… No! In the entire country, it’ll be hard for you to step an inch! Don’t you come!!!”

Xu Yangyi walked over in front of her. The distance between the two of them was no more than twenty centimeters.

“Idiot?” He studied Hu Jiaojiao with a smile that wasn’t a smile. “Was that a curse for me?”

“Not at all! No! It wasn’t a curse for you! I wasn’t cursing you!!!” Hu Jiaojiao nearly wept in fright, screeching her response.

Swoosh! Xu Yangyi raised his hand. 

“Eeeeek!!!” Hu Jiaojiao immediately yelped as she crouched down. A finger snap rang out. Xu Yangyi laughed, watching the truly crying Hu Jiaojiao. He turned around and departed. But at this time, applause and a man’s voice resonated in sync. 

“I haven’t seen you in three and a half years, but you’re still the same.”

A sentence thereupon awakened Hu Jiaojiao from the middle of her nightmare. In a twinkling, the winter day turned frosty. She stood up at once, wiped her runny tears, and yelled hoarsely, “Big brother!”

“Big brother, hurry up and handle this! Those guys don’t want me!”

“T-This thug bullied me! Boohoo, boohoo!”

Her complexion faintly flushed and she pursed her lips, even squeezing out a few pitiful tears. As she turned her head, she caught sight of a man dressed in camouflage who was standing at the side of her car. He wore a small complex smile. Nevertheless, his gaze wasn’t on her.

Behind him, there were also a couple people. Some had stirred expressions, some raised their middle fingers at the man connected to the Audi, and some were grimacing exaggeratedly. However...

There wasn’t anyone looking at her.

“Why are you here?” Xu Yangyi was likewise surprised, but he came to a sudden realization. “Ming A-AA6666, this is… your car?”

“This is my car!” The man hammered his chest. “We of the Nantong Province branch, all of the surviving champions, finally meet again!”

“Welcome back, paragon!”

Hu Ba was in a cold sweat. His mouth wished to say something, yet nothing came out. He was none the wiser of what had occurred in the back. He only knew that was a fist, a fist he’d never seen! Even the boxing champion he’d studied Muay Thai from couldn’t strike out with wind pressure!

This was a legendary realm! It was fundamentally impossible for this to exist in reality! However, he wasn’t alone; everyone was stunned. Presently seven people had appeared while they weren’t paying attention. Nobody had noticed them. Everyone was watching Xu Yangyi in shock.

“My god…” a university student stuttered, “D-D-D-Did you all see that? Just now, t-t-that girl’s hair flew up!”

“Is that Yip Man?!” A female university student firmly grabbed onto the arm of a male classmate beside her, her eyes radiating light. “He can fight ten-on-one, right!” [2]

“How can it stop at ten…” Once astonishment passed, the look in the male classmate’s eyes turned to extreme shock and worship. “Maybe fifty will do…”

“Is this real…?” The middle-aged man fished out a cigarette, but couldn’t put it in his mouth. His lips and fingers were both softly shaking. “There’s still a true martial arts master in the world? One so young?”

None dared to speak. They had all been stunned by that fist earlier. If the contrast of Hu Jiaojiao at the side was absent, that fist possibly wouldn’t have been considered much. Everyone would only feel that it was fast. Very fast. Extremely fast.

Nonetheless, with the addition of all of Hu Jiaojiao’s hair flying back in the instant the fist was presented… that spectacle was too staggering! An inhuman strength!

“Big brother, big brother!” Hu Jiaojiao sniveled and teared up as she wept, running over to the leading man in camouflage like a helpless little birdie. Her Hermès handbag, a bag worth a couple tens of thousands, had landed on the ground because she’d been shaken to fright by that fist. She didn’t risk retrieving it.

The man glanced at the girl running over and raised a brow towards Xu Yangyi. “Why?”

“You should know, Chu Zhaonan.” Xu Yangyi shrugged his shoulders in a very devil-may-care manner. “I just didn’t expect that this was your car. It’s not too convenient for me to find you right now.”

Chu Zhaonan nodded and looked at Hu Jiaojiao who had ran only half a meter from him. Not even brushing an eye over her, he sealed a slap on her face!

Pow! A crisp noise rang out, causing everyone to sober up from their shock once again. The women flinched. Even if they were separated by some distance, they could feel the pain of that slap. The men gulped. Likewise, they could feel the force behind Chu Zhaonan’s slap.

“Huh… Eh! Ah!!!” Hu Jiaojiao had almost been sent flying by this slap, and she covered her nose as she fell on the ground. After she got up, she yelped out in pain. Soon, her yelp became a screech because she saw that her hand was covered in blood from her nose. In the end, it was a shriek of disbelief! 

Why?! How could her beloved big brother that had always treated her well, recognized by all the scions of Mingshui Province’s political elite, hit her? No, that was wrong! Her big brother seemed to know this bastard? He had actually hit her for this wretch?!

“B-Big brother! Y-You…” 

Before she even finished speaking, Chu Zhaonan had already grabbed her by the throat and lifted her up. His face cold, he said icily, “Apologize.” 

Hu Jiaojiao couldn’t even get out a word. She’d never seen her big brother’s expression so cold. 

Their social circle had ranks. Chu Zhaonan was a deputy minister’s grandson and the only child of a provincial governor. There was no question he was steadily seated as number one. She, Hu Jiaojiao, was a silk-pants, but Chu Zhaonan was even more of a silk-pants than her! [3]

If he said he was number two in the province, none would dare to call themselves first! Concerning Chu Zhaonan’s command, she was simply without the will to resist. It was like a bellwether giving orders to a flock of sheep. She could only nod her head with the utmost effort.

“Hah…” Gao Ye’s exhaling voice came from behind. “I’ve heard you mention this young beauty a few times. Aren’t you pretty nice to her? Are you really willing to hit her?”

Chu Zhaonan laughed and scratched his thumb across Hu Jiaojiao’s face. “Listen, I don’t owe you anything.” He looked at Xu Yangyi in passing. “But I owe him a life.”

Hu Jiaojiao’s scalp tingled madly! If she were this close in the past, she definitely would’ve been rather happy. But now, she was shivering from head to toe in fright.

How was this possible?! This classless plebeian was actually capable of making her big brother owe him a life? Was Chu Zhaonan deceiving her? 

Chu Zhaonan loosened his hand. Right now, Hu Jiaojiao cared nothing about honor and respect. Almost weeping as she crawled before Xu Yangyi, she took a knee as she wiped her tears and bawled hoarsely, “I was wrong! Mister! I…”

“His last name is Xu.” Chu Zhaonan said quietly from behind her.

“Hiccup…” Hu Jiaojiao’s sobbing voice paused in breaks. Subsequently, she bawled even louder. “Mr. Xu! I’m sorry! I was wrong! I was really wrong! Please… boohoo, boohoo… please forgive me…”

The people in the surroundings soon became dazed. What was going on in this drama? This reversal was too fast! Director, are you sure there’s no problem with the screenplay you wrote?

“W-What’s going on?” A driver took a drag of his cigarette, his features trembling. “This is… forcing someone to apologize in style, and then afterwards an even more awesome person makes this brat apologize?”

“This is frickin’ awesome!” On the contrary, the students were enjoying the drama with no sign of weariness. “This reversal has standard and adversity!”

This reverse sweep in plot was too abrupt. So unexpected that the surrounding people started to silently enter their cars and drive away with their spirits rejuvenated. 

Yes… although it was a bit late, they had unexpectedly watched a good show. Huehue, they could post it on their WeChat Moment’s to get likes. [4]

“I put my fucking money on it! That floating hair scene is definitely going to net me a thousand likes!”

“Why in the world are you fooling around so dramatically?” As car after car drove by at their sides, Xu Yangyi looked at Chu Zhaonan, not knowing whether to laugh or cry. “You don’t owe me… Oh, that’s right, get up.”

The sound of Hu Jiaojiao’s weeping came to an immediate stop, yet she carried a sense of terror and promptly jumped into her car. 

“I owe you,” Chu Zhaonan answered, his face bereft of emotion. 

“Let’s walk first, Brother Xu.” Luo Sanfeng came over, rolled up his sleeves, and rubbed his fists. “I’ve been holding onto a grudge from that kick for a long time now… Just you wait… you, y-you’re at the fuckin’ middle stage of Qi Condensation?!”

He couldn’t control this shriek. But just as his anger riled, it immediately drained away. Xu Yangyi laughed, “I was lucky. Nothing but a fluke.”

“As if!” Luo Sanfeng flipped off Xu Yangyi vindictively. He didn’t make a sound.

“Apart from me just entering middle Qi Condensation half a year ago, they’re all at the initial stage,” Chu Zhaonan chuckled. “Haven’t you guys heard that you should be earnest in cultivation? Are you realizing the gap now?”

“This isn’t the place to talk.” The gunslinger tilted his head. “A lot has happened in these three years. Plus, I can’t stick around here for long. Brother Xu, your situation is a little delicate. We’ll be heading out first.”

As the others set forth, Chu Zhaonan raised his hand to stop them. “There are some matters that all of you are better off not knowing.”

“It’s a JQ!” A baby-faced cadet glowered at Chu Zhaonan. Xu Yangyi vaguely remembered this person had been oppressed by Chu Zhaonan. [5]

What answered the cadet was a middle finger, and Chu Zhaonan and Xu Yangyi jumped, landing directly on a farming plot at the side. Finding a farming path, they sat down.

“You sent me on a good chase.” Chu Zhaonan passed over a cigarette. “My time is tight. There are a few words I must say to you.”

Xu Yangyi nodded. The deep emotion in his heart was like a tide. Three years… Three whole years. These were real, old friends. Originally, they could even be said to hold some animosity. However, there was a matter that caused them to walk together, devoid of the most meager apprehensions.

They were both people who had survived a holocaust. True comrades-in-arms.

In an unseen place, every person strove with their best efforts to survive. In the end, among thirteen, only seven remained. [6]

1. Master Xing is referring to famous Chinese director/actor Stephen Chow.

2. Ip Man was a famous martial artist known for being the master of Bruce Lee. In recent cinema, he has become very popular. This reference to “he can fight ten men” is talking about a scene in the first movie. If you have the time, watch all three! The ones with Donnie Yen in it.

3. Silk-pants is a term for very, very rich in China. An idea that, well, your pants are made of silk.

4. Huehue = 呵呵哒. To my understanding, this is a Chinese forum slang kinda like lol/lmao/rofl, but with a different context. More like a mischievous/aloof laugh. So I thought huehue would work.

5. JQ is Chinese internet slang. I thought about localizing, but it’s hard to get a close meaning in English. JQ is the first letters of the pinyin of Ji Qing = 基情. This phrase is used somewhat jokingly by straight dudes to suggest homosexual relations.

6. Just a reminder that there were thirteen champions from each city branch in Nantong Province. We got confirmation that of the thirteen, six died during the Vermilion Snow Incident.

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XTB's Thoughts

Next chapter is 88. Author skips 87.