The Return of the Condor Heroes -
Chapter 40 – The peak of Mount Hua, Part 6
Chapter 40 – The peak of Mount Hua, Part 6
“Little Brother, what is your great surname and given name?” asked Yang Guo.
“The little Monk’s disciple is surnamed Zhang and given name Junbao,” Jueyuan answered on his disciple’s behalf. “He has helped me in the library since he was really young, sweeping the floor and watering the plants. He calls me Master, but he has not shaved his head, since he is a layman disciple.”
Yang Guo was impressed, he praised, “An excellent Master will produce an excellent disciple. The Venerable Monk’s disciple is an extraordinary one.”
“It’s not ‘excellent Master’, it’s just that this boy has a flawless talent,” said Jueyuan humbly. “It’s a pity little Monk does not know anything. I am afraid I will not do him any good. Junbao, you are very fortunate to meet such experts today. You have to ask for advice. Remember the saying that goes like ‘listening to a master’s words is more precious than reading books for ten years’.”
“That’s right,” answered Junbao, while he thought in his heart, “Right now the most important thing is getting the books back. I can ask advice later …” He kept this thought to himself, and did not say anything.
Zhou Botong could not contain himself any longer after listening to Jueyuan’s gentle words.
“Hey Yin Kexi and Xiaoxiang Zi!” he said, scolding those two. “You can deceive Elder Monk, but you cannot deceive me, the Old Urchin! Do you know who the Five Experts of today are?”
“I do not know,” answered Yin Kexi. “Please enlighten me.”
“Good!” said Botong proudly. “Stand straight and listen! They are the Eastern Heretic, Western Passionate, Southern Monk, Northern Hero and Central Urchin! The first and foremost is the Central Urchin! I say you stole those books, and therefore, you are the thieves! If you were not the thieves, then those books must be in your possession somehow! You have to present those books to this monk! If you hesitate, watch out, I am going to cut off one of your ears!”
Having said that, the Old Urchin moved forward, his arms open wide. He wanted to carry out his threat.
Xiaoxiang Zi and Yin Kexi frowned. They knew the Old Urchin’s skill; they also knew he would do what he said he would. While they are contemplating what to do, Jueyuan opened his mouth again, “Benevolent Master Zhou, you are wrong! There are rules for everything. On the matter of the Nijia Jing scriptures, if they said they borrowed them, then they borrowed them. If not, then they didn’t borrow them. But if they did borrow and did not admit it, then we can say they broke the rules.”
Botong heartily laughed. “You see?” he said, “Elder Monk is remarkable! I’m helping him to get his books back, yet he helps them to speak! What kind of rule is that? Elder Monk, I want to say something! I want to make sure they stole the books. If they didn’t, I’ll take them back to Mount Shaoshi for them to steal the books. Either they did or did not steal, but they still are the thieves!”
Botong spoke unreasonably, but Jueyuan nodded his head. “Benevolent Master Zhou, now you are talking!” he said. “Only let us not use the word ‘steal’, let’s just say that they ‘took without permission’. These two gentlemen had the desire to borrow; yet they did not have the permission. They have taken the books without permission.”
Listening to this discussion, everybody smiled in amusement. They talked without logic. Yang Guo could not contain his anger. He stood up in front of Zhou Botong, facing Yin Kexi and Xiaoxiang Zi. “You have assisted a tyrant committing atrocities!” he said, “You have betrayed our country by being allies with the Mongolians! You deserve death for this crime! We have Reverend Yideng and Venerable Jueyuan here. These two monks won’t let me beat you to death. Therefore, I am going to give you two choices. First, you return the books you stole and never set foot on the central plains again. Second, each of you will receive one blow from me. Whether you live or you die, let your fate decide!”
The two looked at each other. They did not dare to give an answer. They knew the fierceness of this man surnamed Yang. They realized they would not be able to take even one of his blows. Yin Kexi thought, “Only this one day…if I can survive this day, I can train myself and take revenge later on … Seems to me that amongst this bunch the monk is the easiest one to talk to. I’d better try him.” He said, “Great Hero Yang [Yang Da Xia], let’s sort out the business between you and I later. In terms of martial arts skills, you are way superior to me; I do not dare to offend you. But about the books, let us talk to Monk Jueyuan. You don’t have any business in it; do you, Yang Da Xia?”
Before Yang Guo could answer, Jueyuan had already nodded his head repeatedly. “That’s true!” he said, “This Benevolent Sir had spoken reasonably.”
Yang Guo could only shake his head. He grinned and turned to Zhang Junbao. He saw the youngster’s eyes were shining; it looked like he wanted to attack. Therefore, Yang Guo winked at him, encouraging him to go. Yang Guo then positioned himself behind the boy.
Zhang Junbao understood his signal; he moved toward Yin Kexi and harshly said, “Benevolent Mister Yin, I was reading the book that day. You sneaked up on me, sealed my accupoints and disabled me; then you stole the four-volume Nijia Jing scripture. Is that true?”
Yin Kexi shook his head. “If I wanted to borrow the book, I would ask you,” he denied, “I believed little Master would not deny me. Why would I seal your accupoints?”
Jueyuan nodded. “Yes, yes, that’s true,” he said.
“Both of you said you did not borrow the book, do you mind if I search your body?” Junbao asked.
“Body search is not proper,” said Jueyuan, “But this business is complicated. Benevolent Sirs, do you have a better idea on how you can remove my suspicions?”
Yin Kexi was about to deny further when Yang Guo suddenly said, “Venerable Monk Jueyuan, I believe these two would not have any interest in the teachings of Buddha! Monk Jueyuan, is there anything special in those books?”
Jueyuan was silent for a while, he was thinking hard. But then he answered with a deep voice, “As a monk I cannot tell lies. Since Benevolent Master Yang has asked, little Monk has to give you the truth. Inside the Nijia Jing scripture there is another book written by Master Damo himself. That book is the ‘Nine Yang Manual’ [Jiu Yang Zhen Jing].”
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