RMN C436 A Body and a Soul

Blue butterfly sighed to herself. Maybe there was something to that guess but she could hardly make sure of that right now. Neither did she have the time nor could she spare attention for other things when Zhi Guan wanted to go out there to forge the weapon.

She pushed away the memories of the past and those extraneous thoughts and turned back to the disciple. She still couldn’t believe that he really wanted to do this here. Now, after seeing it again, even less than before.

She enlarged the window, still not stepping out of the dreamscape but allowing Zhi Guan to see outside as well. “Is this the place you meant?”

Zhi Guan had already looked outside before and was certain that this was indeed the place he had wanted to use. “It is. Thank you for bringing me here, senior. This will indeed save us a lot of time in forging my junior’s new sword.”

Blue butterfly looked at him, not sure what to make of this. This youth … she had still believed that maybe they had miscommunicated but it seemed he really wanted to forge the weapon right here in the chasm. Should she say that he was courageous or that he was pretty darn stupid? “Are you sure that this is the right place to forge a weapon?”

Zhi Guan turned back to her, his expression a bit bland. Most likely, this person had no idea about forging weapons, otherwise, she surely wouldn’t be asking this. He hesitated for a moment but then felt that it was better to explain earnestly so she could gain a deeper understanding. “Senior might not know but when it comes to swords, they need to be able to withstand all kinds of situations.

“Of course, what it comes down to is that you need to be able to strike out with them but also to defend. What it is you need to strike and what you need to defend against will vary each time though. There are different weapons, different foes, and different places, after all.

“A good weapon has a body and soul. It needs both to allow the one wielding it to achieve the best result. But even the best have weaknesses. For a weapon, those weaknesses lie in how they are forged. You can forge a weapon that will have a high impact but won’t allow the highest possible speed or you can forge an agile weapon with less force. Either of these can be right for the right person and the strengths affect the weaknesses and vice versa.

“Those weaknesses are a trade-off you are willing to make but there is one thing that cannot be compromised on: you want neither the body nor the soul of the sword to be broken or invaded. In this regard, most people only consider the body of the sword. It has to be durable, not brittle, may not snap in two, may not fracture. Even if it can be whittled down bit by bit over the decades, you still need to be able to trust in it.

“What most people forget is the soul of the sword that resides inside. This, as well, can be invaded. And if it is, then the one who connects to the soul exposes his own soul to that evil, putting his life at great risk. Thus, I believe that from the very beginning of when the sword is created, one needs to take this into consideration.”

“This chasm, it is filled with fierce ghosts. If the weapon can be successfully forged here, it will be able to withstand being intruded by precisely that kind of ghost. I can’t think of a place more suitable than that to make the best possible sword for my little junior.”

Blue butterfly stared at him, still not sure what to think. Well, she was pretty sure that he wasn’t stupid by now, but this was something she had trouble wrapping her mind around. “You seem pretty fearless.” Yes, he wasn’t just courageous, it seemed that there was nothing that could make him worry. He was speaking of this chasm as … an opportunity, not a place that made people feel weak in their knees and mourn the past.

Zhi Guan looked at her, not sure how she had arrived at that conclusion. “There are many things I fear. I’m not sure why senior would think that that isn’t the case. This chasm though, it is not one of them.

“Whether it be a person or place, everything can be overcome as long as you keep your mind clear, your body healthy, and a good grip on your sword. What I fear is that I will fail at precisely these things. But I have been here before and the chasm can’t cause that to happen. So why should I be afraid of it?”

Blue butterfly looked at him, feeling that, bit by bit, she was gaining a better understanding of him. It still seemed like a foreign concept to her, but at the end of the day, maybe this was also because her feelings about this place were just too complicated.

She was afraid when she was there. Most likely, that was because of her own past. She felt that she had caused this, had caused all those deaths and the destruction. Of course, she was afraid to come here. Because if the fierce ghosts lingering here had any resentment, then surely, it would mostly be toward her and the other three guardians. If some youth came here with good intentions, maybe they wouldn’t attack. As for her, that was different, wasn’t it?

She wasn’t sure what to do and finally just motioned outside. “Well, even as your senior, I’m not ashamed to say that I’m different. This place, I would rather not enter it. I’ll let you out up here and wait nearby. Don’t worry, even if you can’t see me, I will always be close by. If anything happens, I can pull you in at a moment’s notice as long as you’re in the right state.”

Zhi Guan nodded, already having gone through the process of being pulled into her dream once. Just like Tong Chen, he didn’t have much trouble getting into the right state. In fact, he had to say that this state wasn’t any different from his usual one. He could probably just step out and then back in without trouble.

It felt odd since everyone seemed to think that it was a big matter to enter a dream, but there should be a reason for that. Either way, it wasn’t important right now. He shouldn’t lose time by pondering these matters.

With that thought, Zhi Guan nodded at her and then stepped right out of the dream, making blue butterfly blink her eyes.

“Huh? That was new.” Usually, even Tong Chen wasn’t able to just step out of her dream just because he wanted to. No, he still needed to wait for her to push him out. But this Zhi Guan … apparently, he was able to do even more than Tong Chen.

Well, it was a good thing. At the very least, this meant that he would stay safe while in the chasm. That was something to be happy about. She didn’t want any accidents to occur. Not ever and absolutely not in this place.

« ToC »

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s