123 A Dead Lady
Su Bai felt that it was much easier when he tried to hide his scents since his breath had become slower. Must be because of the old man's pill. He was confident that he would not be noticed by Seven or Gyatso as long as they were kept at a distance.
However, he waited for three hours before climbing up mountain just to be sure.
Last time when Su Bai was close to the hilltop, he was stopped by the old woman's constant persuasion. He thought since MT 2 was issued to all the audiences, others might pioneer if he didn't take the lead.
So he was glad to wait for a while and let others take the risk.
Before he started off, Su Bai looked uphills and saw a dim flame like a firefly. That must be Fatty and the others. He tried to measure how far they had gone according to that flame, then he frowned slightly. Generally speaking, the three of them should be far over halfway up the mountain in three hours, considering that they were physically quite strong.
Did they run into some trouble or accidents? Su Bai couldn't tell because they were too far away from him.
He even thought about that old woman. Maybe she appeared again? But that was almost impossible because the Buddhist scents of Seven and Gyatso could naturally suppress that old woman. She couldn't be so bold to appear before them. Besides, it was unwise to ask too many people for the same favor. For example, Su Bai would not be appreciative if he found out that the old woman had played the same trick on the others to warn them all.
Since the others were moving slowly, Su Bai had to slow down as well. It was safer to keep a certain distance from them. He had no intention to join them, and it was not necessary to meet them now. It seemed to be hopeless if a team was united by nothing but benefits and every member was ready to stab one another in the back.
Besides, Su Bai wouldn't consider himself welcome in their team, considering what Su Bai had done before.
Around midnight, Su Bai saw that flame finally reach the hilltop.
He subconsciously sped up. But at the same time, he suddenly sensed an unusual smell. He was right beside the pavilion, which was about halfway to the hilltop. He didn't stop, just kept going.
After a while, he finally stopped and stood still.
"Figured. How can it be possible that all the audiences I don't know are wiped out and only those I know are left in this spoof story."
He seemed to be talking to himself, but clearly he meant something.
A figure stepped out of the woods. It was a well-shaped lady.
Around her wrist there was a string of a bracelet that was shining, even in such darkness.
"Why stop?" The lady's voice was clear and crisp.
"It feels bad to go ahead without knowing the danger behind me. "
Su Bai said honestly. He had slowed down and let the others take the risks, but now there was someone else behind him using him as a mine detecter. Apparently, he didn't feel good when he realized that. It would be better if he was the last winner while all others were fighting in the front.
"I noticed you a long time ago." The lady said, "I followed you the other day, but you went back."
"I have to admit, you're really good at hiding. Enhanced as an assassin?" Su Bai shrugged. "In fact, I'm curious why you have so much hatred against me? If you didn't show so much intention of killing me, I'm sure I wouldn't have noticed you, and you could still be hiding in some corner nearby."
"My jade beads sensed danger. Sorry, that was my mistake. Or I should say, I've still got a long way to go on cultivating my own mind." The lady was honest.
"So now? Should we go up together or fight till death here?" Su Bai asked.
"Let's go up together. It seems unworthy to fight here." The lady made her choice.
But Su Bai didn't move, just stood there staring at the lady.
After about five minutes of stalemate, the lady finally asked in surprise:
"What? You wanna fight?"
Apparently, that was the most obvious explanation for Su Bai's doing.
Su Bai licked his lips, smiled, gestured "after you" and waited there.
Somehow, the lady was afraid to step forward because of the five minutes of silence.
"What?" Su Bai asked.
The lady took a deep breath, stepped up and stood in front of Su Bai.
"They are already there. Let's hurry up."
Together, they sped up.
About half an hour, they arrived at that stone tablet that read "Fulong Temple". This was where Su Bai had turned back instead of going forward.
The lady stopped, crouched down in front of the tablet, took out something like a rubbing[?] and attached it to the tablet.
"Can I have some of your blood?" The lady asked.
Su Bai shook his head. "Mine's not available."
The lady nodded. She kind of understood Su Bai's explanation. He would have offered if it was convenient to take out some of his blood.
The lady cut her palm with her finger and smeared her blood onto the rubbing. After a while, she took it off. On the blood stained rubbing, there was no "Fulong Temple" but only one character:
"Funny." Su Bai stared at that word.
The lady nodded, "Indeed, very funny. Last time after you returned, I couldn't take the risk to stay long, but I did notice this tablet. It's so peculiar. Maybe it is not the real hilltop in front of it."
Su Bai crossed his arms while thinking. "Then what it might be? An enchantment?"
"If it's a Taoist rite, an enchantment totally makes sense." Su Bai said.
"Who would write 'death' on the tablet of their enchantment?"
"It's not illegal if they want to." Su Bai replied.
The lady stared at him. "Do you know something I don't?"
"I'd say you didn't follow me since the beginning, only after I entered this town."
The lady nodded, admitting that he was right.
"That'll be fine. Never mind. If you're scared, you can stop here."
Su Bai walked up the stairs and past the tablet. The road was much easier after the tablet. After another five minutes, he saw a Taoist temple. But it was so short that it couldn't fit in such a majestic mountain. It looked just like an ordinary hut without a slightest trace of a Taoist master.
The lady caught up with him and followed behind. She was excellent at hiding, but Su Bai was not concerned about her. If she attacked, Su Bai was sure he could handle it, or even fight back.
After all, no assassin would be fond of this kind of targets like vampires or zombies, because they were hard to be kill at the first attack.
"Kind of disappointing." Su Bai observed while walking. If there wasn't an Eight-diagram Mirror hanging over every house and so many Taoism-related things, Su Bai would believe that it was just an ordinary village in mountains. Especially, there was even a string of corns hanging by the door of a household.
Walking forward, Su Bai saw several graves, new and old.
They approach until Su Bai stopped in front of a tomb without anything written on it.
"That looks so new."
"Indeed." The lady agreed.
"By the way, do you mind taking that mask off?" Su Bai grew impatient. The lady was dressed in all black. He understood that was a professional requirement, but it would be too much when she wouldn't even show him her face.
"You really wanna see?"
"Are you super ugly?"
"Then no, I'm not interested." Su Bai changed his mind.
Next, Su Bai focused on the new tomb. It was so new as if it was made yesterday, and the earth had not dried up yet.
Su Bai took out Exorcer and started digging.
He was determined to see who on earth was buried here.
Exorcer was incredibly sharp. It was a great waste to be used for digging a grave, but it worked well. Soon, the shallow grave was open.
There was an coffin in it. Not very expensive, just a simple-designed ordinary coffin made of common wood that could be seen everywhere in the mountain. In fact, a coffin always contained a lot of details, but this one was different. Nothing was showed on it, as if all the details were intentionally left out.
Su Bai clapped his hands to clear the dirt off and said to the lady behind him, "I need a favor. Hold the other end, I'll hold this end. Let's open it."
"Really? Here? Open a coffin?" The lady seemed to be concerned.
Su Bai was so angry that he burst into laughter. "How can you think so much at this moment!"
The lady nodded and stood at the opposite end.
They each grabbed an end of the cover. Su Bai had been paying attention; it was not nailed. Soon, the cover was moved away, revealing a dead lady inside.
The lady was wrapped in black clothes; even her face was hidden under a black gauze mask.
"That looks like you." Su Bai joked. Then, his eyes glazed when he saw that shining bracelet over the dead lady's wrist.
The lady nodded. "Exactly. You really ruined my hard work yesterday. I went through all the trouble of digging this grave and buried myself yesterday, but today, you just dug me out."