Chapter 33: Shocking Conversation
He did not answer any of these questions. Some because he didn't want to, others because he didn't know what to say.
He knew that Lin Xian Er was the Plum Flower Bandit.
He knew that Ah Fei could not bring himself to kill Lin Xian Er.
He knew that Ah Fei took Lin Xian Er away.
But to where?
The ponytailed girl said, "This was the first time you missed a chance at killing him. You want me to keep going?"
Li Xun Huan could only chuckle, "You don't have to."
The ponytailed girl said, "Everyone else says you're a true man, but you actually seem quite girly."
In his life, Li Xun Huan has heard thousands of insults directed at him. Yet this is the first time someone has accused him of being 'girly'. He really doesn't know whether to laugh or cry.
The ponytailed girl looked at him with her big, shiny eyes. "If you have nothing to say, why don't you start coughing?"
Li Xun Huan sighed, "Young lady's eyes really are sharp, looks like you're a distinguished person. I'm sorry I didn't recognize you."
The ponytailed girl said, "Stop flattering me, I'm just a nobody."
Li Xun Huan really did start to cough.
The ponytailed girl said in a sweet voice, "I know you never brag about yourself, but like to praise others. This is one of your best characteristic, but also one of your worst. A person can't be too humble, you know."
Li Xun Huan said, "Young lady..."
The ponytailed girl cut in, "My surname isn't 'Young', my given name isn't 'Lady', so why do you keep calling me 'young lady'?"
Li Xun Huan smiled. He suddenly felt that this girl is quite interesting.
The ponytailed girl added, "My surname is Sun, I'm called Sun Xiao Hong, not the 'Hong' in 'ShangGuan JinHong', but 'Hong' as in the color red."
Li Xun Huan said, "My name is Li..."
The ponytailed girl cut in, "I've already known your name for a long time. Now I want to duel with you!"
This shocked Li Xun Huan, who said, "What kind of duel?"
Sun Xiao Hong giggled, "Of course not kung fu. Even if I practice for another hundred years, I still can't beat you. I just want to have a drinking competition with you. When I hear that someone else is a better drinker than me, I get pissed."
Li Xun Huan smiled, "I know everyone who drinks share this problem, but never thought you'd be the same."
Sun Xiao Hong said, "Except if I compete with you right now, I'm getting too big an advantage."
Li Xun Huan asked, "Why?"
Sun Xiao Hong said seriously, "After that fight, your body is tired, so your alcohol tolerance becomes lower. A drinking duel is the same as a kung fu duel. You need the right time, right place, and the right attitude to perform well. Miss one of these factors and your skills diminish."
Li Xun Huan said, "Just from what you've said, I can see you're an expert drinker. To be able to duel with such an expert, I would get drunk with no regret."
Sun Xiao Hong's big, bright eyes shined brightly, showing happiness, showing awe, yet her face is still quite serious. "Well... Since I gain the advantage in terms of time, you should therefore pick the place."
Li Xun Huan couldn't help but laugh. "In that case, follow me."
Sun Xiao Hong said, "After you!"
The hours right before dusk are the worst business hours for a shop.
Hunchback Sun sat at the door, looking at the sun.
At this time, Li Xun Huan came with Sun Xiao Hong. Hunchback Sun couldn't believe how these two people can together.
It really is strange how these two became friends.
Li Xun Huan did not see Hunchback Sun's expression, but he finds the whole situation quite funny.
This little girl never stops talking. Once she opens her mouth, she'll chatter constantly, making it hard to converse with her.
Li Xun Huan finds two things most annoying in life.
The first one is to find out that no one else at the dining table drinks wine.
The second one is to find a woman who chatters constantly.
He finds the second thing ten times as annoying as the first.
The strange thing is, not only does he not have a headache right now, he actually feels quite refreshed.
When the opponent of a wine-drinking competition is a beautiful woman, it really is quite refreshing.
If a woman is smart, pretty, and can drink, even if she talks too much, a man can tolerate her... but otherwise, a woman should talk as little as possible.
On the way, Li Xun Huan heard her say many things. The old man is called White-haired Sun, the grandfather of Sun Xiao Hong. Her parents are already dead, and she had always lived with her grandfather. They're almost never apart.
He couldn't help but ask, "So why isn't your grandfather with you now?"
Sun Xiao Hong gave a simple answer, "He went out of town to send someone away."
Li Xun Huan wanted to keep ask, "Why did he have to send this person outside the town?"
"Who is he sending?"
"Why didn't he take you along?"
But Li Xun Huan never likes to talk too much. Besides, it's not like he has a chance to with Sun Xiao Hong around.
It's almost as if she purposely doesn't want Li Xun Huan to ask that second question, countering with questions of her own.
"How did you learn your legendary dagger?"
"I heard you have a friend named Ah Fei. His speed is comparable to yours. Do you know where he is?"
"You disappeared for two years. No one knew you were hiding in Hunchback Sun's shop. Why did you hide there?"
"Now that people know where you are, where do you plan on going?"
"Who's the Plum Flower Bandit?"
"He hasn't appeared in two years. Did he get caught?"
"If he is caught, did you catch him?"
He did not answer any of these questions. Some because he doesn't want to, others because he doesn't know what to say."
He knows that Lin Xian Er is the Plum Flower Bandit.
He knows that Ah Fei would not bring himself to kill Lin Xian Er.
He knows that Ah Fei took Lin Xian Er away.
But to where?
Had Lin Xian Er since become a good person?
Is Lin Xian Er in love with Ah Fei?
When he thought about this, he can only sigh.
He doesn't know what to do in the future either.
Sun Xiao Hong constantly kept her eyes on him, her gaze filled not just with admiration, but also with understanding.
Li Xun Huan looked up and met her gaze.
His heart suddenly pounded.
Sun Xiao Hong said, "Can we start the duel now?"
Li Xun Huan said, "Fine."
Sun Xiao Hong rolled her eyes, "Good. Now lets talk about how we will compete."
Li Xun Huan asked, "There are many ways to compete in drinking wine?"
Sun Xiao Hong said, "Of course. You didn't know that?"
Li Xun Huan said, "I only know one method, and that is for everyone to drink as much as possible. Whoever throws up first loses."
Sun Xiao Hong chuckled, shook her head. "It looks like you still lack drinking knowledge."
Li Xun Huan said, "Really?"
Sun Xiao Hong said, "When it comes to wine, you can duel using the brute-force method, or the scholarly method."
Li Xun Huan said, "So what's the brute-force method? What's the scholarly method?"
Sun Xiao Hong said, "The method you just described is the brute-force method. You're just chugging it all down"
Sun Xiao Hong said, "Of course. What else would you call it when people just throw it all down the throat?"
Li Xun Huan said, "What else are can we do? Should we pour it down our ears, then."
Sun Xiao Hong smiled, "If you really can drink with your ear, then I would admit defeat now. I certainly can't do it."
Li Xun Huan said, "It's too slow to drink with my ear, I'm not patient enough."
Sun Xiao Hong said, "I'm just a little girl, so how can I compete using the first method? However, there are many scholarly methods of competing too."
Sun Xiao Hong said, "You can guess numbers, clap hands, but these are too common. How could people like us compete like this?"
Li Xun Huan said, "In that case, what else is there?"
Sun Xiao Hong said, "There's only one method left."
Li Xun Huan couldn't help but laugh. Sun Xiao Hong also laughed. "However, this one method is not only original, but also quite interesting. Even if there are thousands of other methods out there, we'd still pick this one."
Li Xun Huan said, "There's already wine on the table, and I just want to drink it. So feel free to pick any method you want."
Sun Xiao Hong said, "Listen closely now, this method is actually quite simple."
Li Xun Huan could only listen.
Sun Xiao Hong said, "I'll ask you a question. If you can answer it, then you win, and I have to drink a cup."
Li Xun Huan said, "What if I can't answer it? Then do I lose?"
Sun Xiao Hong said, "Not really. Only when I answer my own question would you then lose."
Li Xun Huan said, "Once I lose, I then get to ask you questions, right?"
Sun Xiao Hong shook her head, "Nope. The winner can keep on asking forever, until he loses."
Li Xun Huan said, "If you keep asking private questions, then wouldn't you keep on winning?"
Sun Xiao Hong smiled, "Of course I can't ask private questions. If I ask you who's my mother, how many brothers I have, what's my age... then you obviously can't answer."
Li Xun Huan said, "Then would kind of questions are you going to ask?"
Sun Xiao Hong said, "Once we start, you'll find out."
Li Xun Huan chuckled. "I'm getting ready to lose."
Sun Xiao Hong said with a smile, "Ready? Here's the first question."
Her smile disappeared, her eyes staring at Li Xun Huan, and then asked, "Do you know who wrote that letter?"
This really is a shocking question!
Li Xun Huan's eyes lightened up, he stuttered, "I don't know... Do you?"
Sun Xiao Hong said calmly, "If I didn't know, then why would I ask you this question? That person is..."
Sun Xiao Hong purposely paused a moment, then said calmly, "...is Lin Xian Er!"
Her answer is even more shocking! Li Xun Huan has always been a calm person, but he couldn't help but shake just then. "How do you know it's her?"
Sun Xiao Hong said, "It's not your turn yet to ask questions. So drink your wine first before we move on."
Li Xun Huan quickly finished the whole cup.
Sun Xiao Hong asked, "Do you know Ah Fei's condition?"
Li Xun Huan answered, "No."
Sun Xiao Hong said, "Although he's living with Lin Xian Er, he doesn't actually know what Lin Xian Er does."
Li Xun Huan immediately asked, "Where is he now?"
Sun Xiao Hong shook her head and sighed. "Why are you so impatient? Wait till you've won before asking."
Li Xun Huan can only drink another cup. This cup is actually bigger than most bowls, yet he still finished the cup faster than usual. Because he really wants to hear the third question."
Sun Xiao Hong asked, "Do you know why Lin Xian Er wrote that letter?"
Li Xun Huan answered, "No."
Although he has guessed at her intentions, he's still not certain."
Sun Xiao Hong said, "Because she knows that if people want to hurt Lin Shi Yin, you'd appear. She wants to make you appear, then find people to kill you. You are her biggest enemy in this world. She's terrified of you. As long as you're alive, she can't reappear."
Li Xun Huan sighed, drank the third cup.
Sun Xiao Hong asked, "Do you know who's the first person to want you dead?"
Li Xun Huan answered, "I've killed way too many people in my life. So how could I know?"
Sun Xiao Hong said, "But only two or three people in this world can kill you. The first one is ShangGuan JinHong!"
Li Xun Huan didn't find this answer surprising. He drank the fourth cup, then couldn't restrain himself from asking, "Is he here now?"