Chapter 2: Yuzhou (Pt.
1)

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Two days passed.
The three disciples said their farewells to Yun Yangzi and took their first steps into Jianghu. 

Gu Yun and Jiang Ling made special trips to say goodbye to villagers and hunting families that they frequently visited, saying that they were leaving the mountain to temper themselves.
The aunts and uncles1 in the village thought of them as their own children, and for a time, they were reluctant to part with them, handing them fruit to take along on their journey.
They gave the villagers their thanks, purchased three horses, then set off straight toward Yuzhou. 

Even before entering Yuzhou, vendor’s stalls and peddlers lined the street.
The three of them sat down at a tea shop. 

“Did you hear? The Whale Gang2 detained the goods from Mingzhou’s Gu family!” A shaven-headed uncle at the table next to them chatted with his companions. 

“This Gu family of Mingzhou is a well-known merchant family in Jiangnan.
Their business has actually grown so large that they’ve come to Yuzhou? They will surely meet with a dragon3, and I will watch them eat their loss.
The Gu family has no way of dealing with the people of Jianghu.
Their hands cannot reach this far.” Said another, an older brother with a face full of stubble, like a performer in a play. 

“This is the territory of the Tang Sect.
Have they not taken notice?” A lean young man said, sipping his tea. 

The older brother with the beard replied: “The eldest daughter of the Gu family is afraid of offending the Tang family…” These older brothers and uncles continued their conversation enthusiastically. 

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Gu Yun, who was sitting to the side drinking his tea, did not know what expression to wear. 

“Shixiong, could this … be your family? Should we go and help?” After hearing the conversation, Jiang Ling was in high spirits.
She knew that Gu Yun was from Mingzhou and his family engaged in trade.
The Gu family also sometimes had someone come over with gifts.
Aside from a few items, Yun Yangzi sent everything, including the silver, back.
To run into family matters after just descending the mountain, Jiang Ling felt ready to make some trouble. 

“No, my sister can handle it.” Although Gu Yun had separated from his family when young, he often received letters from home, and he was more or less aware of the situation.
He knew that his sister was dependable, but he could not help feeling anxious. 

This Whale Gang was an unruly but mediocre group.
A large sect, the Tang Sect, resided in Yuzhou.
The Tang family did not mind those stealing water by the riverbank; once a small business itself, the Tang family would turn a blind eye to certain affairs.
This time, when the Gu family’s eldest daughter, Gu Zhao, came to Yuzhou to negotiate on business, the Tang family also knew about this, and provided many benefits.
However, it seemed like the eldest daughter of the head of the Tang family, Tang Wanyi, was not satisfied, and the negotiations broke down.
The Tang family did not want to protect this batch of goods after all, and the Whale Gang moved on their devious plan. 

Yun He saw that they had finished listening and drinking their tea, and she called them over to set off for the city to find an inn for the night. 

As expected, Yuzhou city was truly prosperous.
Restaurants and tea shops lined both sides of the street, with attendants at the entrances calling out to attract customers.
Travelers sauntered by in an endless stream.
The streets were paved with neatly cut stones, a far cry from the small villages at the foot of Crane Song Mountain, which would be filled with mud at the slightest rain. 

Come night, the stars were faint while the moon shone brightly, a single solitary cloud by its side.
A perfect setting for a nighttime adventure. 

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On the second floor of the inn, the back window opened slightly, and two shadows passed through the crevice, landing firmly in the courtyard outside.
The two people were clothed for traveling at night, and with their qinggong, they lightly swept along the buildings’ eaves and soon left the city.
They moved toward the north part of the city, to the wharfs along the river.
Two burly figures inspected the boats along the riverside with torches, while three people sat to the side, resting. 

“Shixiong, I inquired about this place this afternoon.
The Whale Gang has detained your family’s goods here.”

“Hm.” Gu Yun prepared to take out the sword at his side, but Jiang Ling pressed down on his hand vigilantly. 

“Someone’s here.” Jiang Ling reminded Gu Yun, her voice lowered.
Jiang Ling specialized in qinggong and light movements, so her five senses were much more perceptive than the average person. 

Soon, another group of nimble martial artists, wearing sturdy, dark clothing, appeared next to the two burly dockworkers.
Each wore a silver mask, with a shining “Tang”  character on their belts.
They were from the Tang Sect. 

They released some silver needles soundlessly toward the five people on the boat, and the group of three swiftly entered the ship’s cabin to dodge.
The dockworkers laid on the ground, and it was unknown if they were dead or alive. 

Soon, the indistinct sounds of fighting drifted out of the cabin, then the sounds of people begging for mercy: “My lady, it was I who had eyes yet failed to see Mt.
Tai4.
In the future, I will be more diligent.
The goods from the Gu family will be delivered safely to Mingzhou.”

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The eldest daughter of the Tang family had unexpectedly come in person.
Jiang Ling could not help but slant a measuring look at Gu Yun. 

“Your sister is really capable.
Her relationship with the Tang Sect is not as bad as expected.”

“It’s business.
Since the groups and sects of Jianghu are also involved, so of course my sister is capable.” Gu Yun used the passing opportunity to praise his sister.
In his heart, he was naturally proud of his sister Gu Zhao, who could maintain good relationships with both Jianghu and the cliques of the business world. 

“Looks like the Tang Sect took the first opportunity to uphold chivalry.
Let’s go back.” Although Jiang Ling felt that it was a pity, she shook it off.
After all, the troubles for the Gu family had been resolved, and the two of them returned to the inn. 

“Everything was solved?” Once they entered through the window, they heard Yun He speak from where she sat beside the table, scaring the two nearly out of their wits. 

“Aiya, shijie, you almost scared us to death!” Jiang Ling hurried to grab the lamp.
She looked at Yun He’s expression, which appeared serene on the surface, but revealed a faint glimpse of the fury underneath.
When Jiang Ling glanced at the hem of Yun He’s clothes, she discovered that they were still damp from the dew outside.
Because she was worried about them, she had gone out, too.
With a warm feeling in her heart, Jiang Ling rushed to recognize her mistake: “Shijie, we won’t act on our own next time!” After she finished speaking, she winked at Gu Yun. 

“Ah, right, we were wrong.
We won’t dare to next time!” Gu Yun understood the signal. 

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“Since everything was resolved, you two should rest.
Next time, do not meddle in the trivial affairs of Jianghu.
We are only here to explore and have fun, not deliberately muddy the waters.”

The shixiong-shimei duo nodded in agreement.

1 Not their actual uncles and aunts, but y’all understand.
Same goes for ‘older brother.’  

2 排鲸帮, i.e.
Whale Gang, a faction referenced in some Wuxia.
I might leave it as Paijing instead of Whale, cause it sounds kind of weird in English.
For now, it’s Whale Gang. 

3 i.e.
someone more powerful that can kick their butt

4 有眼不识泰山, meaning that the person in front of you is super important/powerful and you did not recognize them.

Also, on a side note, I have some personal things going on, so I’m posting the half chapter I have and will hopefully get the other half done soon.

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