The everyday life of Cang Qiong and Kong Kong was particularly noisy and sweet. The love and happiness have nourished them. These two lovebirds were happily spending the summer vacation together with love and affection. On the night before Cang Qiong returned home Kong Kong was humming a little tune as he organized the sheets and clothes, packed them up, and was ready to return to their home by the beach early tomorrow morning. Cang Qiong went to the convenience store to buy their breakfast for tomorrow and would be back soon.
While the house was being tidied up, Kong Kong suddenly saw a shadow flashing into the house…
“Qiong Qiong, are you back?” Kong Kong saw two individuals, one in black and another in white, standing next to the door, “Huh? Who are you…?” ‘Could they be the Black and White Impermanence* as people claimed?’ An unsettling feeling spread from the depth of his heart…
* Black and white impermanence, or Heibai Wuchang, are two deities in Chinese folk religion in charge of escorting the spirits of the dead to the underworld. As their names suggest, they are dressed in black and white respectively.
“We are the Black and White Impermanence. We are here today to take you to the underworld. You’ve been waiting for this day for a long time, haven’t you?” The jet-black man smiled at Kong Kong, revealing a row of white teeth that gave Kong Kong goosebumps…
Kong Kong shook his head, who wanted to go to the underworld? “You must have found the wrong person. Qiong Qiong did fortune-telling for me that said I could still live my life for 89 years. The person you are looking for is not me…”
The White Impermanence took out a piece of paper and looked at Kong Kong again, “Nothing is wrong. This is you! Your name is Kong Ru, born on January 30, 1972, and died on June 27th, 2000….”
“Wrong, wrong! I was born on July 30, 1972, you have made a mistake!” Kong Kong was in a panic. ‘If they caught the wrong person, wouldn’t I have to be forced to reincarnate? Cang Qiong, please come back quickly!’
“Listen to me!” White Impermanence wasn’t easy-going like Black Impermanence. He abruptly interrupted Kong Kong, “You should have died in a traffic accident on June 27, 2003, but something seemed to have happened that disrupted your original destiny…”
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“R’x cynj bsxl…” ‘Xb xu Qse! Wkdyzzu, Cksdt Cksdt kp cynj!’
Uydt Cksdt oyp nsdqwple obld bl pyo vblpl vos pvaydtlap kd bkp bsxl yde osdelale, ‘obu yal vblal vos okze tbspvp kd xu bsxl?’
Isdt Isdt oyp yzalyeu vlaakqkle. Ebld bl pyo Uydt Cksdt yp kq bl bye plld bkp pyhksa. Tl awpble wr yde iwknjzu tayccle Uydt Cksdt, “Cksdt Cksdt, vblu yal Jzynj yde Ebkvl Rxrlaxydldnl. Mblu pyke vbyv xu zkqlvkxl byp clld lmbywpvle, yde vblu byhl nsxl blal vs vyjl xl yoyu… oss…”
Gp pssd yp Uydt Cksdt blyae vbyv vblu olal tskdt vs vyjl bkp pollvblyav yoyu, Uydt Cksdt’p lmralppksd kxxlekyvlzu nbydtle!
Ebkvl Rxrlaxydldnl nsdvkdwle: “Isdt Sw’p qyvbla oyp y xyaakle xyd. Ebld bkp xsvbla ekpnshlale vbl vawvb, pbl zlqv vbl xyd. Jwv yqvla zlyhkdt, pbl qswde swv vbyv pbl oyp raltdydv okvb Isdt Sw. Isdt Sw’p xsvbla oyp yzps y pvwccsad osxyd, kd saela dsv vs zlv Isdt Sw’p qyvbla jdso vbyv Isdt Sw oyp bkp psd, pbl nbydtle Isdt Sw’p eyvl sq ckavb vs Kwzu 30. Fs, yzvbswtb vbl eyvl sq uswa ckavb sd vbl bswplbsze altkpvayvksd cssj kp oakvvld yp Kwzu 30, vbl Bdelaosaze’p Jssj sq Nkql yde Plyvb nzlyazu alnsaele y ekqqlaldv eyvl! Mseyu kp uswa eyu sq elyvb!”
“Zsw qyav! Zsw vos okze tbspvp pvsr ralvldekdt vs cl vbl Jzynj yde Ebkvl Rxrlaxydldnl yde elnlkhkdt rlsrzl! Rq usw nsdvkdwl vyzjkdt dsdpldpl blal, R okzz cl awel vs usw, tlv swv!” Uydt Cksdt vssj sqq y zsdt-posae rldeydv qasx bkp jluakdt yde blze kv kd bkp byde. Ebld bl nbydvle y prlzz, vbl pxyzz rldeydv kxxlekyvlzu vwadle kdvs y alyz posae, lxkvvkdt czwl zktbvp…
Jzynj yde Ebkvl Rxrlaxydldnl eked’v nyal ycswv Uydt Cksdt. Mblu nsdfwale wr y nbykd yde blze kv kd vblka bydep. Ebkzl ulzzkdt “Tyubyubyu”, vblu rsple fwpv zkjl Jawnl Nll oyhkdt y dwdnbyjw, yde vbld vbalo vbl nbykd yv Isdt Isdt. – Ebyv olal vblu eskdt?
Jydt! Uydt Cksdt pzypble vbl qzukdt nbykd kdvs vos rklnlp, yde vbl posae ldlatu lypkzu nwv sqq sdl sq Ebkvl Rxrlaxydldnl’p yaxp!
“Humph! Black and White Impermanence? You make me laugh, have you heard? What a bunch of trash!”
Cang Qiong sneered at them and was sure that they must be fake!
Black Impermanence was stunned after seeing White Impermanence injured. He smiled at Cang Qiong and gave a thumbs up while saying, “Wonderful!”. And then—— he ran away without looking at his companion?!
“Hey! Hey…Wait for me!” When White Impermanence realized he was alone, he picked up his sliced arm and ran away too…
‘Are they really the Black and White Impermanence? What a shame…’
Cang Qiong hugged the terrified Kong Kong into his arms and silently stared at the black chains on the ground…
Suddenly, “Kong Kong, let’s go home!”
“I don’t think it’s that simple. Maybe they weren’t lying. If we go home now, godfather can help us!”
So they immediately packed up and called a taxi to go home directly.
When they got home, it was six o’clock in the evening. Cang Qiong dragged Kong Kong into the door just as his family was about to finish their dinner. Once Mother Cang saw that Cang Qiong looked like he was holding something in his hand, she knew it was Kong Kong! She rushed upstairs to find her glasses and earplugs. Father Cang had gone out to work; he wasn’t at home. Once his godfather saw the expressions of Cang Qiong and Kong Kong, he knew something was wrong. But Cang Qiong just acted normal and sat down with a smile, asking to have something to eat. It looked like he didn’t want his mother to know.
After Mother Cang went downstairs, she immediately went to the kitchen and brought all the rest of the meal to Kong Kong, but forgot to leave anything for her son. However, Cang Qiong and Kong Kong weren’t in the mood to eat properly. Kong Kong finished his meal and washed all the dishes quickly.
After cleaning the dishes, Mother Cang went out to play mahjong, and his godfather immediately ran into Cang Qiong’s room and asked what happened. Cang Qiong told him everything that happened to them and showed the incomplete chain. His godfather started to ponder silently with a frown as if it was something grave…
Cang Qiong felt his godfather was too nervous, “Godfather, the Black and White Impermanence of the Underworld are nothing special! I just waved my sword a little, and one of their arms was cut off. If they dare to come again, I will cut off their heads!”
The godfather sighed, “Alas! My idiot Cang Qiong! Do you think the ghosts you fought with were the real Black and White Impermanence? If every dead soul should be led by the real Black and White Impermanence, how many places should they visit in one day? Those you have encountered today were just some of their lowest-ranked ghosts, black and white clothes are their traditional uniforms!”
“No way?!” Kong Kong and Cang Qiong didn’t expect the Underworld to provide uniforms.
“There is another set of Ox-Head and Horse-Face* uniforms. If the current uniforms are dirty, they can change to another set.”
*Ox-Head and Horse-Face are two guardians of the underworld in Chinese mythology. They shared the same job as Black and White Impermanence.
“What are the real Black and White Impermanence doing?” Cang Qiong asked.
“They? Assisting the Yama King of the Underworld! Unless there is a major incident, they won’t leave the Underworld easily…”
“Are they powerful?”
“Very powerful! Not only are they powerful, but also very cunning! You would never defeat them!”
“Can godfather defeat them?” In Kong Kong’s mind, his godfather was the most powerful person!
His godfather smiled bitterly, “Kong Kong, I was a civil official, they’re military officers! If we really have to fight…there’s… a slight…possibility if we fight with each other one-on-one. But if I have to fight with both of them, I’ll definitely die!”
“Then what about counting me in?” Cang Qiong knew he had been studying various spells diligently over the past year and had made great progress.
Godfather shook his head, “No, you are a mortal after all…”
“But I am an orthodox descendant of the Cang family, I am not an ordinary person!”
“No, no… Black and White Impermanence are authentic gods no matter what. Plus a group of little ghosts behind them, we would be definitely finished… Moreover, if I really meet them, I…” His godfather couldn’t bear to continue… Obviously, if his godfather encountered the Black and White Impermanence, he would be captured and taken back to the underworld.
The three were silent for a while. Kong Kong finally couldn’t bear it anymore and spoke: “It’s all my fault… I’ve figured it out very clearly, it’s better for me to go to reincarnation…”
“What nonsense are you saying?”
“For the past two years, Qiong Qiong has provided me a very happy life. I think this is enough. I can’t bother you anymore…”
“You shouldn’t have this kind of thought! If you are going to enjoy your reincarnation and forget me completely after you become a new person. Do you really have the heart to let me live in the pain of losing you for the rest of my life?”
“I…but…but…wooo…” Kong Kong turned into a crybaby again.
“There is no but! The happiness I have just grasped, I won’t let go of it easily!” Cang Qiong had promised himself that he would make up for Kong Kong’s lonely 12 years by all means. They have just started their new life. He wouldn’t allow anyone to take away Kong Kong!
“Ok, that’s it.” His godfather smiled softly and interrupted, “I will give you this, ‘Covering Star’, so those divine spirits won’t find you…”
“What about you, Godfather?” Cang Qiong didn’t want to lose Kong Kong, nor did he want to lose his godfather.
“I will be taken back to the Underworld sooner or later. It’s only a matter of time. I’ll give Kong Kong the ‘Covering Star’’, at least you two can still live happily together.”
“Don’t… People have to go to the Underworld one day, it’s also a matter of time…” Kong Kong didn’t want to make his godfather suffer because of him.
“It doesn’t matter. Seeing my child’s happiness is the greatest wish of a parent… Even if I can’t have it, I always hope your children can have it…”
“Godfather, I don’t want you to be taken back to the Underworld! Do you think you will have a good life when you go back? They will punish you for sure! If you get one of the top ten tortures, such as plucking out the sinews and pulling off the skins, do you think I can live with no worries?”
For Cang Qiong, both Godfather and Kong Kong were the people he cared about the most, just like the palm and back of his hand. He wouldn’t feel at ease if he lost either of them…
“Boom!” The thunder again…
The godfather threw himself into Cang Qiong’s arms, and Cang Qiong gently patted his back. When Kong Kong saw such a scene, he suddenly felt that Cang Qiong and his godfather were a good match. Godfather was remarkably stunning, not as immature as himself… If only he wasn’t here from the start…
Cang Qiong seemed to catch Kong Kong’s stupid idea. He had one of his arms around his godfather as he reached out to Kong Kong with his other arm, inviting him to his embrace… Kong Kong accepted Cang Qiong’s invitation and gently leaned in. Cang Qiong blinked his eyes mischievously, as if he was saying: Little idiot, don’t think too much! You are my lover! Afterward, a few kisses landed on Kong Kong’s hair…
Soon, thunder and lightning sounded. A violent storm was coming.
Mother Cang called them to say that she didn’t bring an umbrella, so she would play mahjong the whole night.
In the morning, Cang Qiong woke up and only found Kong Kong who was sleeping beside him, but his godfather had disappeared. On the bedside table, there was “Covering Star” and a brief note: ‘I am going to return to the Underworld, take good care of yourself and Kong Kong. See you.’ There was the signature of his godfather. A cute self-portrait left next to the words.
“Kong Kong, wake up! Kong Kong!” Cang Qiong shook Kong Kong awake.
“What’s the matter?”
“Godfather is gone!”
“Gone? Where could he go?”
“He said he is returning to the Underworld, but I don’t think he would go back so soon. I’m going to find him, come with me.”
Kong Kong immediately got up and put on his clothes. Cang Qiong also finished washing up as quickly as possible, leaving a note for his parents. Then he hurriedly left the house with Kong Kong. Cang Qiong temporarily let Kong Kong wear the “Covering Star”; when they found his godfather, they would return it to its original owner.
“Qiong Qiong, do you know where godfather has gone to?”
“At least I can feel which direction he is in.”
“Yes. My parents gave me an ordinary body, but my soul was given by my godfather. My soul and his soul have a slight sync feeling, so I can find him by sensing his direction.” He added: “In my mind, my godfather is the same as my biological father… that’s why I’m so nervous about godfather, so no need to be jealous over it!”
Kong Kong pouted and said, “Who said I am jealous?”
“Okay, okay, you’re not. Hurry up! I don’t think Godfather has gotten that far yet!”
Cang Qiong took Kong Kong directly to the beach, standing on the dam and searching…
“I feel Godfather should be here…but where is he?” He wouldn’t jump into the sea, would he?
Kong Kong also searched carefully, he just wished he could grow a pair of eagle eyes. Suddenly he saw a shadow among the reeds! “There! There!”
Cang Qiong and Kong Kong rushed down and finally saw their godfather, but…
“Godfather, what are you doing?”
“Aya! Didn’t I say I’m going back to the Underworld?!”
“Who would believe that?”
His Godfather was barefoot, with two dirty hands. His shoes were hanging on his waist, and he was carrying a small bucket full of small crabs…
“Godfather, don’t tell me, you came here to catch crabs after you ran away from home?”
What an incredulous scene…
Cang Qiong and Kong Kong looked for him everywhere. While they nervously and anxiously searched for his godfather for a whole morning, godfather was leisurely catching crabs on the beach. Cang Qiong felt like he was an idiot…
“Qiong Qiong, you should go back quickly. Let me have fun for a little longer…” Godfather had found another crab hole…
Cang Qiong took off the “Covering Star” from Kong Kong’s neck and hung it on his godfather, “Godfather, let’s go back!”
However, his godfather closed his eyes and sighed, “Aya… you fool, I told you to leave…”
“Do you think all of you can still leave?” A loud voice suddenly sounded on the beach. It was like it was from a distance but also close too.
“Who?” Cang Qiong looked around but saw no one.
Suddenly, the color of the sky began to change. The scorching sun was covered by layers of dark clouds, and the sea breeze became stronger and stronger… Two people who came out from nowhere suddenly appeared on the beach! One was in black cloth and another was in white. The black one had a slender figure and a cold expression. He wore a black shirt, black jeans, and black sport-shoes. If Cang Qiong wasn’t wrong, the shoes were Nike. The white one wore a white robe and white sneakers. His silver hair was fluttering with his flying white belt. What a strange and elegant person. But in Cang Qiong’s view, this person was like an albino patient. So they should be the real Black and White Impermanence, right? Sure enough, they were extraordinary and elegant in manner. Just wondered whether they have applied for a patent for their style yet? They walked slowly towards his Godfather…
Having walked up, White Impermanence smiled politely, “Lord Shi, I have finally met you…” Lord Shi? To be honest, Cang Qiong had never known his godfather’s name.
“Ha ha ha…” His Godfather forced out a stiff smile and waved his hand like an idiot, “Little Black, Little White, long time no see…haha…”
‘Little Black and Little White? His godfather called Black and White Impermanence “Little Black and Little White”? What was his godfather’s rank in the underworld?’
“Yes! It’s been a long time indeed! Thanks to you, during the past 20 years, Little White and I didn’t have anything else to do but looked for you everywhere! We have been playing around because of you! We haven’t received any bonus for the past 20 years because of you! Even paid vacation was canceled! How could you repay us?”
“Ok, I’m sorry… Okay, okay, I surrender now! Take me back!” The godfather patted these two’s shoulders and then held their arms to go back. But suddenly, as Black Impermanence threw out something, Kong Kong screamed.
“Kong Kong!” Cang Qiong and his godfather shouted. Cang Qiong immediately embraced Kong Kong into his arms. Kong Kong’s shoulder was grabbed by a black skeleton gripper, and the sharp claws were deeply embedded into his flesh. The other end of the gripping hand was in the hand of Black Impermanence…
His godfather shouted at Black Impermanence: “I have promised to go back with you, please let go of Kong Kong!”
Black Impermanence’s cold face didn’t change. He couldn’t tolerate a single trace of mistake: “You two are different persons. Both of you will be brought back! We are still calling you Lord Shi because we want to give you some face! After you return to the Underworld, you have to wait for your punishment!”
Cang Qiong conjured up his sword. Before Black Impermanence had the time to react, he cut off Black Impermanence’s skeleton claws. His godfather moved in front of the two children like a hen protecting her chicks…
Black Impermanence said coldly, “Broken Soul Sword? Lord Shi, how many treasures did you steal from the Underworld?”
Cang Qiong squinted at his godfather… It turned out that the birthday present he received from his godfather last year was a stolen good?!
White Impermanence kept his elegant smile and gracefully stated: “Lord Shi, life and death are decreed by fate, you know it. You can’t even protect yourself now, just give up on him…”
“No way! He’s my daughter-in-law!”
The corner of White Impermanence’s graceful mouth twitched slightly, but it returned to its original curvature immediately. “Lord Shi, don’t make it difficult for both of us, okay?”
“Don’t talk to them, just take them down!” Black Impermanence was being cranky. He stretched out his claws and tried to grab the godfather. Cang Qiong pushed Kong Kong to his godfather, and then fought with Black Impermanence with his long sword. Concerned about Cang Qiong’s powerful sword, Black Impermanence cautiously made his moves to prevent himself from being touched or hurt by the sword…
Cang Qiong secretly rejoiced that his godfather gave him such an excellent sword, in this case, he might not necessarily lose! His godfather was also very surprised that his godson could fight against Black Impermanence. According to this reasoning, as his godson’s teacher, he should be more powerful than Little Black?
While Cang Qiong and Black Impermanence were fighting fiercely. White Impermanence suddenly exclaimed: “Wow! Little Black, come here!”
“Little White!” Black Impermanence flew to White Impermanence’s side to protect Little White from the attacks…
“Little Black! Look! What a beautiful conch! The pattern on it looks like an ancient Roman ornament!”
Black Impermanence’s face was covered with black lines which made his face even darker… “Little White, I’m trying to catch this wanted criminal. You are not even helping me, what are you doing?”
White Impermanence smiled apologetically, “Oh! I forgot…”
Black Impermanence was so angry. After he turned back and wanted to continue the fight, he found that the beach was already empty and only an overturned bucket was left on the beach, the freed small crabs from the bucket were all over the place…
“Little White——!——!——!——!” An angry and helpless crying overwhelmed the sound of the waves, echoing on the beach…
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