Peach Blossom Girl Dueling Magic – Chapter 14


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Copyright © 2010 – Jeff Loh. All rights reserved
 
 
Peach Blossom Girl Uses Magic To Break Magic,
Lord Chou Harming Others In Turn Harms Himself.
 
After Peach Blossom Girl met Heavenly Fragrance, the mutual admiration between the two beauties grew. However in the end, Peach Blossom Girl is the reincarnated spirit from Heaven and a daughter of magic who knows the past and future. Tonight she had no choice but to use Heavenly beauty as a scapegoat. How can she be seated on the bed first? With a cold smile, she called out to Heavenly Fragrance and said,
 
“You are a delicate guest; please sit down first at the honoured place. I’ll serve you.”

Heavenly Fragrance replied,

“Sister, you are the older one; I’m only a proxy for my brother. How can I usurp the order of things and sit first?”

Peach Blossom Girl retorted,

“Since you are the proxy for your brother, you’re considered as the groom and therefore you should sit first.”

Heavenly Fragrance knew very well that her father was going to do away with Peach Blossom in a nefarious manner. She had no choice but to obey her father. She longed to return to her boudoir when her duty was done. How could she know of the dangers lurking in the seating placement? Peach Blossom Girl’s words were logical and she answered,

“Since you put it this way, I shall follow elder sister’s advice and this little sister will sit first according to etiquette and custom.”

With that settled, she approached the bed. As she sat on it, Peach Blossom Girl suddenly draped herself with the cover of the curtains and muttered a God Hastening mantra. The spell alerted the White Tiger Marshall. A gust of fierce wind blew up, revealing its true form. What a fearsome shape the Star Lord of Malignancy was! On seeing a female sitting on the bed it pounced on Heavenly Fragrance with a whoosh and bit her! How sad it was,

A delicate flower in an abrupt downpour,
Tender buds meeting a sudden gale.

“Aiya!” cried Heavenly Fragrance as she fell off from the bed, blood gushing out of her mouth. All the womenfolk saw what was happening and were petrified. As they regained their composure, they quickly lifted their fallen mistress whose face as ashen like a piece of gold paper1 with fresh blood still spewing out of her mouth. Her body had stiffened and she died on the spot. The womenfolk tried to revive her but to no avail. A great wail rose up from the room. Some people hurriedly reported to Lord Chou who had already heard the commotion in the bridal chamber. He merely thought his scheme had worked and that the Ren household would be holding a funeral soon. Glee sated his heart until he heard what was reported,

“Our Miss died in the bridal chamber with no cause!”

Upon hearing the news, Lord Chou felt like falling from a high ditch, boats capsizing in the Yangtze River. He rushed immediately into the bridal chamber and with both hands lifted the dead body of his daughter. He began to wail,

“You were Okay today, why now such a sudden death?”

When Peach Blossom Girl heard his words, she simply sneered,

“Lord Chou! Who are you trying to trick? Using your daughter like this? Your words can only deceive fools. Do I get deceived this easily? Last night you summoned the White Tiger Lord of Malignancy to bite me to death. Why, it’s your daughter who is now still bleeding in death. Such a nice girl you sent to death, why cry now?”

Lord Chou was embarrassed to no end and at the same vexed to his very bones. He stopped his wailing and looked up at Peach Blossom Girl. All he saw was.

All donned in the deepest red,
Her demeanor no different from any fairy.

This is the first time Lord Chou had laid his eyes on Peach Blossom Girl in person, her eyebrows arched in the classic manner, her limpid pools are from heaven and her body made in jade2. Lord Chou could not help himself but shuddered as he thought to himself,

“No wonder this bitch is so dangerous. Her demeanor is not of this world!”

Lord Chou had no choice but to give a smiling face and said,

“Miss Ren, you understood this matter but not me. Can you use your magic to save my daughter?”

Peach Blossom laughed out loud,

“Lord Chou, learning the secrets of the Big Dipper itself is not bad. Knowing its usage yet not understanding how to solve… How can you not blame yourself in your shallow learning but others for breaking your divination? Since you begged me for help, I shall save your daughter. What difficulty is there to bring her back to life? Quickly go to the river and get me some countercurrent water and a willow sprig. I’ll show you a trivial trick or two and see how I can bring the dead back to life so that you can sincerely concede with your heart and mouth!”

Peach Blossom continued,

“Do you know what a countercurrent is? When ocean tides come, rivers ebb. When the ocean ebbs, river tides come. With the ocean as the focal point, the tidal water of the river is the countercurrent. ”

Lord Chou was mute-like when he heard the explanation from Peach Blossom Girl and wondered if her idea was any good. However saving his daughter’s life was of utmost importance so he dared not argue any longer with Peach Blossom Girl. Instead he turned to his men and bellowed,

“Quickly to the river and fetch me some countercurrent water and a sprig of willow!”

By the time a breath was let out, the two objects were brought in. Peach Blossom Girl ordered a cold mat placed on the floor and the body of Heavenly Fragrance was put on it with her face looking up. After everyone was ordered to silence, Peach Blossom then casually placed the sprig of willow into the countercurrent water. Thrice to the left and thrice to the right she stirred the willow sprig and started her incantation. With the dripping water from the sprig, Peach Blossom Girl sprinkled it ritually onto the face of Heavenly Fragrance. Such is the miraculous way of immortals, chanting three times and sprinkling three times Peach Blossom Girl had the three superior souls and seven baser spirits of Heavenly Fragrance hooked back into her body. Her spirit churned and soon returned to the mortal world.

“Aiyah! How dreadful!”

Two almond-shaped eyes fluttered open and Heavenly Fragrance jerked up before slumping back to a sitting position on the mat. She was in a daze. Every household member jumped for joy at the sight, exclaiming,

“The powers of Miss Ren are indeed miraculous. Even raising the dead back to life!”

Lord Chou was thoroughly embarrassed and blushed all the way to the back of his ears. He had no choice but to approach Peach Blossom to thank her.

Finally Heavenly Fragrance had settled down and found out that her saviour was no other than Peach Blossom Girl. She was filled with gratitude and kowtowed quickly to her. She did not return to her own room that night but remained in the bridal chamber with Peach Blossom Girl. The two girls appreciated each other’s talents with a you-love-me-and-I-love-you scenario. As both were of the same age, it was a perfect and wonderful opportunity to become bonded sisters. This we shall not elaborate further.

Let’s turn to Lord Chou instead. He was mortified with shame on this day. Alone he sat in his study contemplating to himself,

“All these Gods of Malignancy had been thwarted by this bitch and my daughter was bitten to death by the Divine White Tiger Lord. Though she is saved by that bitch, what an abhorrence she is for showing off in front of all those women to shame me! My idea in using this sham marriage was to destroy her but she’s now sitting comfortably in my own home. After three days she’ll have to see the groom. How can I give her one? She must be destroyed to abate my hatred and to have a good night’s sleep!”

Quickly Lord Chou took out his divine Big Dipper book and studied it in detail. With the birth hours he had on Peach Blossom Girl, he began to calculate and divine a new scheme for her demise. Finally he came out with a “Black Dog Squelching” magic technique. He divined once again to make sure there were no flaws to allow her to escape the trap. Casually he lifted his head and began to smile,

“If I had known earlier and waited for the fire, the rice would have been long cooked. I should have used this before and not have to go through all this fuss!”

With his plan finalized, he put away his ‘Divine Big Dipper Manual’ safely. Heading out to the main hall Lord Chou ordered his servant,

“Here’s a copper penny, go south and get me a black bitch. Bring it to the backyard and wait for further instructions. Make no mistake!”

The servant soon returned with a black female dog and gave it to the one in charge of the backyard affairs. The night passed uneventfully.

The very next day, Lord Chou ordered Peng Jian, “Go to the backyard of the Ren family. There is a worm-eaten peach tree. Chop down a southerly branch. I have use for it and make sure to hold it with thy hands on the way home and do not look back! If so, a blind man ye will become. Don’t say that I didn’t warn you!”

Pang Jian quickly headed for the Ren family. After explaining to Ren Tai Kung, Pang Jian found the great peach tree and cut down a southern branch and returned home as quickly as he could. Lord Chou was delighted and asked,

“Is this a southerly branch? If this is so, bring it to the backyard.” With the peach branch in hand, Pang Jian followed Lord Chou into the backyard. A table was brought in and burning incense was placed on it along with some flowers, fruits, candles and joss sticks. The peach branch was snapped into several pieces. Peach Blossom Girls’ hours of birth was written on a branch with ritually blessed cinnabar. It was then carefully wrapped in yellow cloth and ordered to be tied around the black bitch. A loop was made from another branch and again it was tied to the body of the dog. Seven more peach charms were written and Lord Chou personally placed them on the peach loop that was already tied to the body of the dog. Holding the charms he recited the incantations seven more times. Everything was taken off from the dog and burnt. Immediately afterwards the dog was beaten to death. His servants were ordered to bury everything on the table in a southerly place in the backyard. When all was done, Lord Chou gave out a chortle and exclaimed,

“Oh you disgusting female! See how you can dodge from me this time?”

Actually, Peach Blossom’s lifeline was made into a peach branch familiar. Now that Lord Chou had it chopped down, it sealed her sinus. While all this was happening, Pang Jian was peeping into the backyard and had witnessed everything. Already highly suspicious of the backyard activities, which were verified by Lord Chou’s cold blooded words, Pang Jian grew fearful and said to himself,

“This is no good! He really means harm to Miss Ren. I must quickly inform her so that she can be prepared!”

Pang Jian is like an old prime minister of the household and therefore no one dared stop him from going places. He flew straight like an arrow into the bridal chamber.

As for Peach Blossom Girl and Miss Heavenly Fragrance, they grew close to each other, enjoying each other’s company. They spent the night chatting until the third beat before retiring to their respective rooms. This morning, Peach Blossom was alone in the inner apartments doing her morning makeup and was planning for her return to her family when suddenly she felt her heartbeat rise and fall in rapidity. Quickly she kneaded her fingers and understood everything. She fearfully lamented to herself,

“Lord Chou has cut off my lifeline and used the ‘Black Dog Squelching” technique on me. With my birth hours in his hand, even those with skills of fairies will not escape easily. What should I do?”

As she was pondering on this impending calamity, Pang Jian burst in unexpectedly. His feet had not steadied and words came spilling out of his mouth as he huffed and puffed,

“My virtuous younger sister! My benefactor! No good it is today. Calamity approaches!”

Without missing any details, Pang Jian explained how Lord Chou had ordered him to cut down the peach branch and what he did in the backyard. Peach Blossom Girl was nodding all this while and finally said,

“Big brother, no need to be so frantic. I have already known all these comings and goings. This is known as the ‘Black Dog Squelching” technique, a vile and demonic use of magic. This time, I don’t think I can escape easily. I’m sure I’ll die. If you consider how I saved you, you must now help me!”

Pang Jian heard her words and replied quickly,

“If my benefactress little sister has any use of Pang Jian, I’ll not hesitate to help. I will wade through fire and face ten thousand deaths for you!”

Peach Blossom Girl was elated at his words and said,

“Good! Then your little sister will be saved.”

To know how Peach Blossom Girl breaks Lord Chou’s spell, please continue reading.

NOTES:

1. These are funerary papers with gold-like glitter painted on them to be folded as gold ingots for burning during the Ullambana festival. The Chinese believed that Hades is like another level of existence with all the worldly comforts to be enjoyed in the Netherworld. Hence the need for paper currency, gold, silver and even paper servants and houses that the spirits are accustomed to on this earth. More importantly, life perhaps could be made easier through bribery!
 
 
 
2. The Chinese believe that all gentlemanly qualities are found in jade.
 
Original Text
 
桃花女陰陽鬥傳/第十四回
 
桃花女以法破法
周公爺圖害被害
 
當下桃花小姐見過了天香小姐,二美人各有憐惜相愛之心。到底桃花女乃仙子降生,法門之女,一心明白過去未來,今夜出於不得已,要將天香小姐替位自己。當時那里肯先坐床帳?即冷笑叫小姐:“你是嬌客,請坐了上首。奴只好奉陪。”

天香小姐道:“姐姐是年長的,奴不過今夜權代哥哥,怎好有僭先坐之理?”桃花女道:“既僭令兄,就算是新郎,自當先坐。”天香小姐明知父親要暗害於他,又無救脫他手段,是出於無奈的,巴不得事完了早回閨閣,那裡知道坐位方向的利害?又見桃花說得有理,便道:“如此說,依了姐姐,小妹有僭先矣。”便先到床上首想坐下。桃花女忙用繡帳往身上一遮。口中反念起催神咒,驚動了白虎大帥,一陣狂風起過,現了原形。那位猛烈凶星好不利害!見床上坐著一個陰人,呼的一聲,向天香肩下一口!可憐:

倏忽嬌花經驟雨,
不期嫩蕊遇狂風!

當時天香小姐“哎喲”一聲,撲跌下床,口中流血。眾婦女在下面看見,這一驚不小!急忙忙上前扶起,只見小姐面如金紙,口流鮮血,已直僵僵死去。婦女們呼之不蘇,更放聲大哭起來。就有人去飛報周公。周公在外聽得房中忽放悲聲,只道桃花女著了手,任家人舉哀,心中大喜。忽見人來報說:“小姐無故在洞房中倒地身死!”當下周公不聽猶可,一聽了此言,不覺如在高溝失足,揚子江翻舟,忙忙飛奔洞房,雙手抱起了小姐,放聲大哭道:“何故今日好端端的竟死在這裡?”桃花女聞言,微微冷笑道:“周公!你想把女兒來唬誰人?你這話只好哄那些愚人,如何瞞得過我?你昨晚請了白虎凶星來,咬死了他,所以方才流血。好好一位小姐,竟被你自己使法害死了,還哭什麼?”

周公聽罷,又羞又惱,只得住了悲哭。又推起頭來,將桃花女一看,只見他:

遍體渾身著大紅,
天然媚態與仙同。

周公初見桃花女,幾讓娥眉古士風!周公見他秋水為神,玉為骨,不由的發怯道:“怪不得這陰人如此利害,相貌先已超群!”無奈,只得陪著笑臉呼:“任小姐,這事你明,孤也不明。不知可有仙法解救小女否?”

桃花小姐笑曰:“周公,你學習《天罡訣》未嘗不是,如何只會使,不會破解?你不怨自沒手段,道術不精,怎一味怨人破你天罡八卦?今日既然求救於我,即救你家小姐,有何難處?快取河中的逆流水合柳枝,等我當面略施小術,立刻叫他活轉,方叫你心服口服!”你道怎樣為逆流水?大海長潮,小河退潮;小河長潮,大海退潮。以大海為主講,躬取小河長潮水,為逆流水。周公聽了桃花女之言,都是些堵嗓子的話,心裡怎不受用受用?緣因救活女兒為要,就不敢與桃花女多分辯駁。即刻吩咐手下人:“快去取逆流水合柳枝來!”吹口氣之時,兩件東西俱已取到。桃花女令人取了一張涼床席,鋪在地下,將天香小姐抬在上面,仰面朝天放定,不許閒人喧嘩。他不慌不忙,將那柳枝取了幾根,放在逆流水中,左旋三旋,右旋三旋,即掐訣念咒,中用柳枝醮著逆流水,照定天香小姐臉上一灑去。真乃仙家妙用,咒念三次,水灑三次,天香小姐的三魂七魄歸體,氣轉還陽,“哎喲”一聲,道:“唬死人也!”杏眼雙睜,一個翻身,慢慢的起坐在涼蓆上,只是發呆。大小家人婦女,無一個不喜歡,俱嘆羨:“任小姐法能通神,真有起死回生之力!”周公只羞得面紅過耳,無可奈何,只得上前來拜謝桃花女。

那天香小姐活了過來,所見是任小姐救他的,心中感激不盡,忙拜謝桃花女救命之恩,也不回自己的繡房,便陪著桃花女在新房。但這二位人惺惺惜惺惺,你愛我,我愛你,兩個都是一般大的年紀,十分緣合雅契。這且按下不表。

且說周公此日羞愧難當,獨坐書房暗暗思想:“今日這些凶神惡煞都被這陰人破了,反使白虎神將女兒咬死。雖得他救活,可恨他自顯其能,當著眾婦女們羞辱於孤!孤原使的是誆親之計,未得將他治死,如今反平平安安坐在我府中。況且三日後他要見新郎,可拿什麼與他?必須要一個死手,把這陰人了決。一來免孤之憂,二來能解孤心頭之恨!”忙把《天罡神書》取出仔細推詳,又得了桃花女的生辰八字,按著本命再細細的掐算,得了一個“黑犬鎮壓”之法,算一算再無一點解救的,不覺抬首笑道:“早知是等火,飯熟幾多時,早若用這個法兒,也省了許多悶氣!”想罷,即收好《天罡神書》,走出外堂,叫個家人道:“你拿銅錢一貫,立刻向正南方採買一隻黑色的母犬,帶到後園中聽用,不可有誤。”家人領命去訖。不多時,已把母犬買回,交與園中守著。一宿無話。

到了次日,周公叫彭剪來,吩咐道:“你可到任太公家後園中,有一棵蛀的桃樹,揀一正南方上的,砍大大一枝來,孤要有用。一路拿著,不許你回頭看!你若回頭看時,瞎了你的雙睛,莫怪孤不早說。”彭剪領命,忙往任家對太公說了,到後園揀了一株高大的桃樹,向正南方的枝子砍了一枝,直奔回府。周公大悅,便問:“可是向南的枝兒?且拿進後園去。”彭剪拿了桃枝,跟著周公來到後園,把黑犬牽出。周公便教人擺了香案,設供花、果、香燭,就將一枝桃枝撅斷,醮了硃砂,將桃花女的生辰八字寫在上面,用黃紙包好,令人系在黑母犬身上,又把桃枝打個圈兒,又套在黑母犬身上,又拿桃枝畫靈符七道,親自拿去掛在母犬身上的桃圈兒上,手中掐訣,口中念咒,念了七遍,揭下靈符用火化了,寫八字的枝兒圈也都除下,一共燒化,立刻將黑母犬打死。教家人埋在後園正南方,把供桌等物傾下,便哈哈大笑道:“陰人呀!今番孤看你如何躲得過?”原來那桃樹枝是桃花小姐的本命,今周公先砍了,就治住了桃花女的竇機。那彭剪自己在外暗暗的偷眼看,又見周公如此一番作鬧,心中就有些狐疑起來;後又見周公冷笑中自說出這利害之話,心下大驚,暗自言:“不好了!果然要害任小姐了。我何不速速去告訴於他,使他有個準備也好!”彭剪是向在周家的老宰臣,穿房入舍的,故此無人攔阻他,一直飛奔桃花女的新房來。

且說桃花小姐自從救活了天香小姐,這天香感他的深情,又是和合相投,一日不離。二人伴著談談論論,至三更之後才各回房打睡。這一日,因在後樓早妝,單有任小姐一人坐在房中,想要設法回家去,忽然一陣心驚肉跳起來,連忙掐指一算,心下明白,大驚曰:“周公砍了我的本命根,用黑犬壓法治我,又得了我的生辰八字,縱有神仙手段也不能逃此厄,如何是好?”正在煩難。忽見外邊彭剪忙跑進來。他的足還未立定,便氣喘喘的言道:“賢妹恩人,今日不好了,大禍到矣!”即把周公又作法在後園,制治於你,並把他命他去砍桃枝取用的一五一十的事,細細說明了。有桃花小姐徐徐答應,呼喚:“哥哥不須著急,此事我已早知之矣。此名曰黑犬鎮壓,乃是和魔毒之計法。但此回我料也難逃此厄,命必不能生!你可看前番救你之情,今日你救我一救才好!”彭剪聞言,忙回道:“恩妹若有用我彭剪之處,雖赴湯蹈火,萬死我也不辭!”桃花小姐一聽了彭剪之言,心中大喜,言:“好了,小妹如此無礙矣。”

不知他又用何法解破的,且看下回分解。

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