The Guide to Capturing a Black Lotus

Chapter 12: Substitute Marriage(12)

“What? You guys are leaving?”

Ling Miaomiao’s mouth was pulled wide open. “You’re all leaving tomorrow, are you… all in such a hurry?”

Before she had finished speaking, countless ‘dings’ suddenly flooded her brain as though a dam had broken, all of it rushing out in concert.

She didn’t even need to listen to know that her mission completion rate was too low. The main leads were all about to leave Taicang. She didn’t even have any improvement to show on Mu Sheng’s side, needless to speak of her farming enough intimacy points with Liu Fuyi. 1 [1] Farming/grinding: A video game term where people repeatedly complete a task/mission to gain rewards/get a certain low-chance item.

“Miss Ling, “ A rare warm smile from Mu Yao greeted her, “Demon hunters treat the whole world as their home. Our fate is to drift about. We have already bothered you all by staying here for so long.”

There was a confident and easygoing feeling in her eyes. Especially when she said ‘the whole world as their home.’ Her voice was clear and crisp. She spoke in a very self-assured and confident tone just like a female knight who raised her blade against the heavens.

“It… wasn’t long…” Ling Miaomiao wielded her hand and thought for a long time before very prudently imploring, “How about… you all stay for a while longer. I’m… I’m still scared.”

Mu Yao smiled as she took a sip of tea. Her expression was leisurely yet staunch.

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”Fnyale? Ykpp Nkdt kp pvkzz wdyczl vs pzllr clnywpl usw olal ps pnyale sq elxsdp?” Tkp czynj rwrkzp pllxle vs bsze pxyzz xssdp okvbkd. Tl byzq-piwkdvle bkp lulp yp bl xsnjle bla, “Ps usw dlle xl vs tkhl usw xu pnldvle pynblv?”

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”Ebyv? Fwalzu Zswdt Lsczl Nkw’p pnldvle pynblv kp ldswtb?” Fllkdt bla blpkvyvl, y pxkzl vbyv eked’v qllz zkjl y pxkzl lxlatle sd bkp qynl. Tkp vos pzldela yde obkvl bydep nshlale wr vbl plhlayz pnldvle pynblvp yp bl iwknjzu rwv vblx yoyu.

Mbl czynj zsvwp kp ps lnnldvakn! Nkdt Ykysxkys qlzv y oyhl sq nszedlpp vayhlz esod bla prkdl.

“Gb Fbldt, pvsr fsjkdt yaswde.” Nkw Wwuk nwv kd okvb y alrasynbkdt vsdl; blzrkdt bla tlv swv sq bla ekzlxxy. Nkw Wwuk, nzye kd nzsvblp xsal clywvkqwz vbyd obkvl pdso, vwadle yaswde vs zssj yv bla yde prsjl kd y oyax vsdl. “R’x hlau vbydjqwz qsa Ykpp Nkdt yde Fka Nkdt’p bsprkvyzkvu vbl zypv qlo eyup.”

“Zswdt Lsczl Nkw, usw esd’v dlle vs vbydj wp…”

Psd’v cl kd pwnb y awpb vs pbso uswa vbydjp…

Ling Miaomiao secretly felt anxious; but after holding it in for a long time, she squeezed out this sentence: “I want to go with you all.”

It wasn’t a question. It was a declaration full of strong emotions.

It turned quiet for a moment. Three different gazes all gathered on her face, all with their own expressions.

“Miss Ling, you can’t joke about this kind of thing.” Mu Yao scrunched up her brows. Her tone was serious as she continued: “The path of a Demon Hunter is filled with countless disasters. Not to speak of dealing with those demons, I’m afraid that just living and sleeping in great outdoors would be difficult for you to imagine.”

Mu Yao’s personality was strongly independent. She was both the Mu family’s eldest daughter and the main force in dealing with situations. She was an absolute elitist. If she was asked to take along a teammate whose shoulder couldn’t carry anything and whose hand couldn’t even carry a pig, she absolutely would not accept them.

“I can.” Ling Miaomiao’s pair of apricot eyes started at them innocently. Naivety was written across her face, “I’m very strong. I can endure any hardship.”

”But we haven’t even got two liang of rice for you to eat.” 2[2] Liang: A measure of weight. Approximately 50 grams. The corner of Mu Sheng’s mouth curved up. However, in the next moment he fell into disaster and got berated by Mu Yao: “Ah Sheng, is this the right time to be joking around?”

In the blink of an eye, Mu Sheng who had been taking joy at the misfortune of others flipped his expression into a wronged one. He immediately shut up, lowering his eyelashes in an incomparably obedient manner.

Ling Miaomiao grumbled mentally. If it wasn’t for the seizing of the mayor’s residence and if her old father didn’t forcefully stuff her into the main lead group, why would they accept her?

Mu Yao turned her head around and spoke in a firm tone: “Miss Ling hasn’t experienced this sort of lifestyle before. I’m afraid that you don’t know how difficult it is…” She didn’t know how to convince people, so upon seeing Ling Miaomiao’s near-crying expression, an annoyed expression surfaced on her face. She signaled to Liu Fuyi to take over for her.

Fuyi lightly smiled: “Why has Miss Ling suddenly decided to go with us?”

“I…” Miaomiao thought a few moments. She stared into Fuyi’s pitch-black pair of star-like pupils. She stared until her eyeballs turned dry and tears naturally started to come out. “I don’t want to live like this any longer…”

Her tone grew more and more wronged as she continued her act and a mistiness appearing on her eyes. “Before I met you all, I had given myself up to the ideal of a ‘filial daughter of my parents’. I thought that my life would be entirely spent in my chambers.”

She looked at Liu Fuyi with hazy eyes, “But after meeting you all, I learned that a person could live so freely. You’re all so independent…”

”It’s not as free and independent as you’re thinking…” Mu Yao knit her brows as she interrupted her but Liu Fuyi waved his hand to stop her while he was in deep thought, indicating for her to wait for Miaomiao to finish speaking.

“I don’t want to spend my whole life living in this small piece of earth. I don’t want to get married off to a stranger and struggle everyday to have enough to survive only to slowly and tediously grow old. I can choose my own destiny. I want my life to have a little bit more color… even if it’s dangerous I won’t be scared. This way, in the future, when I recall the past I’ll have more memories to look back upon…”

After she finished her little spiel, Ling Miaomiao shut up. Two streams of tears timely flowed down her face. Looking towards Liu Fuyi’s eyes, she saw what looked like two luminous stars.

Miaomiao even felt moved by her own acts. If she were Liu Fuyi, she would definitely pull her into his embrace in the next moment.

Mu Yao powerlessly turned taciturn. She glanced over at Liu Fuyi with anxious eyes.

Liu Fuyi fell into contemplation. After thinking things over for a while, he took out a handkerchief from his robes and kindly handed it to Miaomiao. He attentively watched her wipe her tears. His gaze was especially warm and tender. His tone even carried with it some encouragement: “This is a significant matter. Have you discussed this with your father?”

”Fuyi!” Mu Yao turned extremely nervous. In her eyes, Miaomiao, this kind of girl who lived their whole life in their room, was definitely someone who always imagined things too beautifully. The fantasies and romances they imagine are, in actuality, nothing at all like reality. “Miss Ling, I understand your meaning, but…”

“Young Noble Liu, Sister Mu. I assure you that I won’t be a burden. If I can’t beat it, I can run. Everyday, I train my body early in the morning. I can run very fast.”

Upon seeing Liu Fuyi being moved, delight lit up her eyelashes as she spit out a string of assurances. She patted her chest and lied without a change in her expression at all: “I’ve discussed this with my father before. He’s very much in favor of me going out into the world to gain experience and gain a wider perspective.”

Finished speaking, she bit her lip as she stared with sparkling eyes at the people in front of her.

“I feel like it’s not impossible.”

”I don’t agree.”

Mu Yao and Liu Fuyi’s voices both rang out at the same time. They were both stunned for a moment before turning around to look each other in the eyes.

This standoff was quite an awkward situation.

“Yao’er, Miss Ling does not seem to be as delicate as your normal noble young lady. She actually has courage and insight…”

Especially when they faced the water mirror. Her expression stayed steady all throughout. She even unceasingly discussed with him the complex trap they found themselves in. Her arrangements were tidy and her reactions sensitive. He admired her.

In actuality, while Ling Miaomiao was sighing over how high his IQ was, he had been secretly thinking that if this Miss Ling were to be born in a demon hunter family, how terrifying would she become? Truly what a pity.

Mu Yao’s expression turned somewhat complicated. She saw how Liu Fuyi brought up how lively this Miss Ling’s expression was and wanted to say something. But, in the end she didn’t say anything.

Her face turned cold: “I have to worry about Miss Ling’s safety. If something were to happen to her, who would be responsible?”

“I won’t let anything happen to her.” Liu Fuyi played down his answer. In the midst of his words, he expressed his distinctive responsible temperament.

This caused Mu Yao to once again grow infuriated. Her face fell even more: “No.”

“Yao’er.” Fuyi frowned, “I know you’re worried about our pace in catching demons. However, you’re rejecting Miss Ling before even seeing what kind of ability she has, isn’t that a little too arbitrary?”

Mu Yao raised her eyes to look at him. Her face was incredulous: “In your eyes, that’s the kind of person I am?”

Seeing the atmosphere between the two grow more and more explosive, Ling Miaomiao was at a loss as to what to do for a while. Her forehead was covered in sweat.

“Ding—- Mission Reward: As a result of the host completing the mission of causing discord beyond the stipulated requirements, host is rewarded with one use of [Memory Catalyst].”

Ling Miaomiao really wanted to cry out in dismay.

What kind of thing is this Memory Catalyst? This thing she couldn’t touch or see? Was the system actually mocking her?

She tilted her head and saw Mu Sheng watching them argue energetically. There was an unfathomable smile on his lips as he happily watched the male and female leads grow contradictions between them.

No matter who she could hope for help from, he was definitely not on that list.

“You guys shouldn’t argue anymore…” Miaomiao took one step forward, inserting herself between the two as she tried to placate both sides: “I know that Miss Mu has my safety in mind. I don’t know how to hunt demons. If I were to die by myself, it would just have middling effects. But if I were to affect you all…”

She looked at Mu Yao, “I promise, I will definitely act swiftly and cleverly. When I need to run, I will definitely not continue fighting. When I have to commit suicide, I will definitely not implicate my squadmates. Teamwork is the absolute most important.”

She held onto Mu Yao’s hand and pulled it into Fuyi’s hand then retreated from between the two. At the same time as she retreated, she followed up with: “Both of you are incredible people. You have to properly protect me… I will slowly grow up and become strong. I promise.”

Mu Yao’s hand was cold as ice as it rested in Fuyi’s palm. He looked at her pale and stubborn side profile and suddenly felt a surge of pain in his heart. He tightly clasped her little hand in his palm.

Mu Yao looked at him; Her expression growing somewhat less cold.

Mu Sheng saw that Ling Miaomiao collapse into a corner while letting out a huge sigh. He squinted at the sight: Didn’t she like Liu Fuyi? What is she trying to accomplish now with her actions?

“Sis.” He slowly pulled open his mouth.

Miaomiao stared rigidly at the black lotus, feeling as if her heart was in her throat.

“I feel that…”

”Young Noble Mu don’t worry! I don’t need to eat two liang of rice a meal!” Miaomiao was afraid of her reincarnation causing butterfly effects. She reached out with her palm and made a very exaggerated posture to make a vow, “I can go a day without food perfectly fine.”

Mu Sheng didn’t know whether to cry or laugh as he looked at her expression that was both nervous and expectant. He then turned around to glance at Liu Fuyi, who was coaxing Mu Yao with soft and tender words.

His expression grew a few shades darker and only after a few moments did he speak up: “I feel that Miss Ling is quite suitable at demon hunting.”

After he spoke, he gave Ling Miaomiao a meaningful smile.

To find someone who’s able to completely tie up Liu Fuyi to the point that he can’t find the energy to go and bother his sister: Wasn’t that exactly what he was looking for?

Mu Yao left in an elegant manner, her sleeves, made out of white muslin as thin as cicada wings, rapidly flitted across the wooden railing of the connecting veranda.

The white oleanders had bloomed, and rows of snow white petals closely placed together lined the side of the veranda. When Mu Sheng and Miaomiao walked past them shoulder to shoulder, Miaomiao suddenly felt her nose acting up from the thick scent of the flowers.

“Oh right, “ Mu Sheng lightly asked, “Just now, when Miss Ling saw my scented sachet, what were you thinking?”

”Ah?” Ling Miaomiao sneezed hard before blankly going into thought. Her gaze lingered on his jade like face as she felt a bit embarrassed: “I was thinking that the ribbon on the mouths of your scented sachets looked quite familiar. They weren’t made from your headband right?”

Mu Sheng smiled at her. His slender finger coiled up the headband on his head: “Are you very interested in this?”

”… No.” Ling Miaomiao was a hypocrite. In the end, she sincerely praised him. “It’s very beautiful, it suits you.”

Mu Sheng lightly smiled and lowered his hand. The bright headband lightly moved along with the wind. There seemed to be a butterfly that sat atop his black hair trying its best to flap its wings.

“How unfortunate. The more beautiful something is, the more malicious they are.”

[1] Farming/grinding: A video game term where people repeatedly complete a task/mission to gain rewards/get a certain low-chance item.

[2] Liang: A measure of weight. Approximately 50 grams.

TLN: Yanno, I wonder if people ever stop to think about why they do what they do. Totally random thought, I know. I’ve been reading RISE on wuxiaworld and I’ve been reading the notes by lilshanks, dev and sietse. I think I ought to add in a bit of flavor into these notes so y’all aren’t just posting ‘thanks’ or something like that 🙂

I’ll be honest though, I have a bad habit of forgetting to check comments. Hoho, by the way, anyone here in Taiwan? It seems like everyone I know in the translating scene lives everywhere but taiwan…. 🙁

EDIT: Changed Shadow Catalysis => Memory Catalyst.

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Entropy [Translator]

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  1. Gail

    Wahhh I can’t help but shout it’s so good👍