Meteor, Butterfly, Sword
aka: Liu Xing Hu Die Jian [流星蝴蝶剑], Lau Seng Wu Dip Gim [流星蝴蝶劍].
This novel was written in 1973.
Although the light of the meteor is short-lived, what else in the sky can exceed its brightness, its magnificence!
Whenever the meteor appears, even the eternal stars cannot deprive it of its radiance.
The life of the butterfly is fragile, even more fragile than that of a delicate flower.
But it only lives in the spring.
It is beautiful, it is free, it flies.
Its life is short yet fragrant.
Only the sword comes close to eternity.
A swordsman's radiance and life, often depends on the sword he holds in his hand.
If the sword had emotions, its vivacity might have been as short as that of the meteor.
* * *
He lay on the grey rock as the meteor drew across the night sky.
He gambled, he drank.
He patronized brothels. He had many different women in his life.
He even killed!
Yet whenever there was a meteor, he rarely missed it. Because he often lay here, waiting. So long as he could feel that sight-stealing brightness, that luminescent excitement, then that was the greatest happiness in his life.
He did not want to miss the chance for anything, because his life contained little happiness.
He used to want to catch a meteor. Of course, this was a long time ago. Now, he did not have many dreams left, and barely any memories.
For a person like him, dreams were not only ridiculous; they were shameful.
* * *
This was the one place in the world closest to meteors.
At the bottom of the hill, the lights were still on in the little cottage. When the wind blew, it sometimes brought sounds of laughter and toasting up the hill from the little cottage.
That was his little cottage, with his wine and his women!
But he would rather lie here on the grey rock. He would rather be alone.
The light of the meteor had already disappeared from the sky.
The water running next to the rock sounded like weeping.
The time for parties had already passed.
Now he had to be calm, extremely calm.
Because one had to be calm before killing.
Now he had to kill!
* * *
He did not like to kill.
Every time the tip of his sword stabbed someone's heart and blood ran down the blade, he could not enjoy the adrenalin-induced excitement.
He felt only pain.
Yet no matter how deep and strong the pain was, he had to endure it.
He had to kill.
If he did not kill, he would have to die!
Sometimes, a person lived not to enjoy happiness, but to endure pain; because living was also a responsibility. No one could escape it.
He started to recall the first time he killed.
* * *
Luoyang was a large city.
Different types of people resided in the city of Luoyang -- heroes and celebrities, poets and painters. Some were rich and some are poor. The leaders of two major sects and the chiefs of three major groups lived in this city as well.
But no one's fame was as glorious as that of Gold Spear Li. No one's wealth and property exceeded half of what Gold Spear Li had, and no one could withstand Gold Spear Li's 49 stances of "Rushed Storm Sudden Rain."
The first person he killed was Gold Spear Li.