Urban Tales of Demons and Spirits
Vol 4 Book of Kan – Chapter 28 Jade Ruyi
First Published on Chaleuria.
Chapter 28 Jade Ruyi (TL note: an S-shaped ornamental object made of jade and a head shaped like a fist)
“Stop bluffing! You take a piss and look at yourself in the puddle. You have a big body, but you’re as courageous as a chicken. You want to destroy our Qingqiu? I’d like to see you try!”
The man’s words seemed to infuriate the nine-tailed fox as if it was the spark that set its heart ablaze. The fox’s eyes suddenly turned red, and its huge irises looked like two lanterns hung in the dark night sky.
The nine-tailed fox let out a scream full of anger and sadness, and then it waved its paw before tearing that strong man into pieces.
At this moment, my vision became blurry, the picture in front of me was like snowflakes on the screen of an old-fashioned TV. Then, I heard Wen Jiubo’s voice.
“Well, let’s stop here. The following scenes are not suitable for children.”
I returned to the living room of the old residence, Wen Jiubo was sitting in front of me. I gasped. That dream was so vivid that I could not stop thinking of it.
“What happened then?” I couldn’t help but ask, though it was quite obvious.
“The villager’s words not only angered me,” Wen Jiubo replied slowly, “they also provoked me. Human beings are such creatures. Once something goes wrong in their life, they will never blame themselves first, but blame their mistakes on others. Anything that’s different from oneself must be rejected, and all foreign creatures are evil. I was afraid of being the target of this behavior, so I hid in a remote place.”
“But those foolish villagers enraged me and forced me to kill one of their leaders,” Wen Jiubo dusted his clothes and said. “Later on, it proved that I made a terrible mistake. After I killed that man, everyone started screaming. They shouted, ‘Monster! We need to find more men!’ and then they fled. The next day, those villagers had gathered more people. They oppressively climbed up the mountain, holding torches, spears, and kitchen knives in their hands. The most ridiculous thing was that those ignorant villagers didn’t think they were in the wrong at all. They just blindly followed what they believed, living in their own small world. They firmly believed that they had found the evil monster who brought them suffering and wanted to get rid of me bravely but tactlessly.”
“Soon, more and more people started to learn of my existence due to those villagers. Not only ordinary people, but even the king learned about me. I didn’t know if the rumors got more and more exaggerated when it spread from villagers to the royal family. What I did know was that not long after, Qingqiu actually sent troops to the mountain to wage war against me. These soldiers were all armed to the teeth and had many swords and pikes. They didn’t give me any chance to explain myself; they just blindly rushed towards me, trying to eliminate me.”
“If I had to pick the moment when I lost all hope in humanity, I think that would be it.” Wen Jiubo sighed and looked out of the window. “I was trapped by their troops. They shot arrows in my eyes and threw torches at me. A large area of my fur got burned, and that’s when I thought that I had to destroy that country.”
There was a sudden wave of sourness that spread in my heart; I was speechless.
I did not believe that Wen Jiubo was innocent. After all, he killed countless innocent people. History carved his deeds on the walls of the altar as well as in the people’s hearts.
However, for the first time, I knew that the cause of this incident was due to the ridiculous ignorance of those villagers. I did not think it would be unethical to say that they deserved it.
“What happened then?” I asked.
“It turns out that although they had a great number of soldiers in their army, in that era they didn’t have good enough weapons to rival my claws. The crusade eventually turned into war. Humans spent several years fighting me, while I spent several years destroying that country. I became the most troublesome problem in Qingqiu, and the whole country lived in fear. And it was at that time that Lingxiao appeared.”
Hearing this name, I looked up at Wen Jiubo.
“As I said, Lingxiao was not a Taoist priest. Back then Taoism didn’t exist yet, so how could there be a Taoist priest? When I first met him, he was just a priest serving the princess,” Wen Jiubo said casually. “I never looked at him, because for me, he was just like a tiny ant I would ignore. I saw him once when I attacked the palace. He hid behind a pillar in the hall, curling up his body like a trembling rabbit. He was so scared that he was almost crying. I could have killed him at that time, but I didn’t. He looked so harmless, so I simply ignored him.”
“He was that weak?” I asked. “But you said he was the one who sealed you…”
“Yes. Although he was the one sealed me, it was not his power,” Wen Jiubo said. “It was an object. He sealed me with that object.”
“What was it?” He successfully aroused my curiosity.
Wen Jiubo became silent, his fingers tapping the desktop as if he was thinking about something. After a while, he opened his mouth.
“Gu Yu, have you ever heard of the Ruyi Jade?”
“Huh?” I was surprised. “Of course, isn’t that a jade ornament? It’s a hairpin or something…”
Unexpectedly, Wen Jiubai shook his head and said, “Think again.”
I was puzzled. I searched the memories in my head, and soon I came up with a ridiculous answer.
I joked, “Are you talking about the Jade Ruyi used by the female snake spirit in Calabash brothers (TL note: a 1980s Chinese animation for small children)? Each time she used that Jade Ruyi to cast spells, she chanted, ‘Ruyi, Ruyi, do what I want you to do.’.”
Wen Jiubo smiled and nodded. “That’s the one.”
My jaw dropped. “Are you kidding? It’s just a cartoon…”
“No, it’s not just a cartoon,” Wen Jiubo answered with a smile. “Jade Ruyi is a magic weapon in legends from ancient times. Legends say that Jade Ruyi can help its owner realize all of his wishes. You will have the whole world if you own it.”
“Is it that awesome?” I narrowed my eyes asked doubtfully. “Does such a magical object really exist? Doesn’t it go against all the laws of physics?”
Wen Jiubo laughed. He tapped me on the head with his hand. “You’ve seen spirits and monsters, and yet you still care about the laws of physics. However, I didn’t tell you this just to make you jealous or surprised. This so-called magic weapon is actually just a curse, or should I say, this Jade Ruyi is the darkest and evilest ritual instrument in the world.”