Translated by Addis of Exiled Rebels Scanlations
“That…Is that you talking?” Duan FeiZhou asked the sword. His behavior must have seemed stupid to the onlookers, speaking to a rusty sword.
That lazy voice appeared in his mind again, “Can’t you understand human language, boy?“
“Geez, swords can talk. What else is possible in this world?” Duan FeiZhou muttered.
“I don’t want to repeat it for a third time!”
Duan FeiZhou looked at the five people who were in the middle of a fierce battle. If the legend was true, then the one who could pull the sword out of the stone was the chosen king. If he was the chosen king, then maybe he could make those five people stop?
After thinking about it, Duan FeiZhou plucked up the courage to hold the sword by the hilt and pulled it out…
He raised the sword in the stone!
…but the stone was still stuck at the tip of the sword, like a strange golf club!
Duan FeiZhou’s body suddenly moved on its own, against his will. He rushed toward one of the men, raised his sword in the stone high, and the stone on the tip of his sword struck the man squarely in the face. The man fell on his back before he could even scream.
The others froze for a moment as they realized that a new enemy had joined the battlefield. In the short time they had to think, Duan FeiZhou had moved behind the second man with a speed he could never have achieved, and knocked him over as he had done to the other man.
The two men lay groaning on the ground. The old woman, the young girl and the remaining pure white mask looked at each other, then turned in unison to Duan FeiZhou.
“Stop right there!” Duan FeiZhou screamed miserably.
Madame Boyle took off her bracelet and with a flick of her hand. The bracelet broke down the middle and turned into a golden short sword.
Duan FeiZhou expected the rusty sword to be cut in two by the golden sword, but instead, the golden sword cracked with a “click”! Madame Boyle froze, and seemed unable to believe that her own sharp weapon had been defeated by such a broken sword. Madeleine pulled a short knife from her boot and slashed at the back of Duan FeiZhou’s neck.
Before the blade came down, Duan FeiZhou turned around as if he had eyes behind his head, and the stone from the tip of the sword hit the girl’s wrist. The young girl screamed and dropped the knife.
Madame Boyle saw the situation and went to avoid Duan FeiZhou, the golden short sword bent again and turned back into a bracelet. She hurriedly pushed the bracelet back onto her wrist, rushed to the girl and picked her up.
Seeing that the two ladies had lost their battle spirit, Duan FeiZhou turned to the last person still standing.
“You…Do you know who I am?” The pure white mask staggered back as he said viciously, “I am from the Salem school. If you dare to hurt me, my companions in Salem…my mentor will never…”
Before he could finish his words, he was struck hard in the stomach by the Sword in the Stone. His whole body flew backwards and hit the counter.
The five who had fought so hard earlier now tried to crouch their bodies down, and didn’t dare to move a muscle. An eerie silence fell over the trading house.
Duan FeiZhou let go of his hand and The Sword in the Stone fell to the floor.
“That hurts! How can you just throw people away!” The Sword in the Stone screamed.
No one else seemed to hear it, only Duan FeiZhou. If you hear a voice that no one else can hear, it is most likely a precursor to madness.
One of the men closest to Duan FeiZhou backed up on his hands and knees, as if Duan FeiZhou was covered in some horrible germs.
“Yes! Apologies, Master of the Trading House! Don’t kill us! Please be merciful! We just got excited for a moment…”
Duan FeiZhou put on a high and mighty attitude. “Oh? I thought you were used to beating each other in the trading house when I saw how skillfully you fought. Did you do this when the previous owner of the trading house was alive?”
The man shuddered. “We’re in no way belittling you because you’re new here! We were really just…We were just…overwhelmed by anger…”
“I don’t want to see you anymore. Get out!”
The three men scrambled for the door. They were quite agile as they fled.
On the other side, Madame Boyle and Madeleine, as they supported each other, moved quietly toward the door.
“You guys are leaving?” Duan FeiZhou turned around.
Madeleine let out a whimper. Madame Boyle held her in her arms with a look of death in her eyes.
“Please give us your permission to leave, Master of the Trading House.” The old woman said. “I swear I will never dare to make a scene in front of you again.”
“Don’t you want your things?” Duan FeiZhou asked.
“No, I don’t want them,” Madeleine shivered. “Those beads…They can only be used once…”
“I meant the potion.” Duan FeiZhou glanced at the small bottle in the display case. “Don’t you want to buy that?”
“We don’t have money…”
“I can keep the shawl as collateral.”
The old woman and the young girl looked at each other, and then at the shawl on the floor. From the women’s expressions, he surmised that they no longer wanted to do business, but were too embarrassed to admit it under questioning by the owner of the trading house.
“Then we will…”
Duan FeiZhou walked to the display case, opened the glass door, and took out the small bottle containing the potion. “Please take your items.”
“Many, many thanks…” Madame Boyle quickly took the bottle, and stuffed it into her pocket as if the bottle would burn her hands. She pulled a sobbing Madeleine, ran for the door, and crashed headlong into the magic tapestry.
The two figures disappeared into the magic circle as if they had been sucked into a vortex.
Now only Duan FeiZhou and the talking sword were left in the trading house. He picked up the shawl on the floor, and stuffed it into the empty display case.
“You shouldn’t accept collateral.” The invisible voice appeared in Duan FeiZhou’s head. “The Secret Trading House never had such rules. She may never come back.“
“That’s exactly what I want. I can’t wait for this place to close down…Wait, is that the sword talking?” Duan FeiZhou looked left and right.
“What, is it unbelievable?“
Duan FeiZhou nodded his head like a garlic pounder, “Why would a sword talk?”
“Because I’m not just any sword, I’m the great Sword in the Stone.”
“The Sword in the Stone?” Duan FeiZhou looked questioningly at the piece of stone stuck on the tip of the sword.
“I’ve been wanting to ask this question for a long time. Are you a foreigner?“
I really am, Duan FeiZhou thought to himself.
“Haven’t you ever heard of the legend of The Sword in The Stone? What poor countryside did you grow up in?“
“Of course I’ve heard of it!” Duan FeiZhou said, “But you’re not like the legendary Sword in the Stone! Isn’t the Sword in the Stone supposed to be inserted in a big stone, and whoever pulls it out is the chosen king?”
“Ah, yes. At first it was like that. Then one day, the place where I was located was going to be made into a railroad. A foreign worker found me. He hadn’t heard of the legend of the Sword in the Stone, but he didn think I was hindering the construction progress. However he had no way to pull me out. So he retreated and dug me out together with a small piece of stone. And I became what I am now.”
“Is that right?” Duan FeiZhou spat.
How come the legendary strongmen who wanted to pull out the sword in stone didn’t think of this genius idea? If you can’t pull out the sword, you can dig it out together with the stone! That’s great!
“If I could take the stone off,” he asked. “Wouldn’t I be the chosen king?”
“You can try.” The Sword in the Stone obviously had little hope.
Duan FeiZhou took hold of the stone and yanked down on it, hard. The stone was sturdy and unmoving.
“Are you sure someone can really pull it off?” He asked, as he panted. “Will the section below you have turned into a fossil?”
“Has your mind turned to mush?” The Sword in the Stone sneered back.
“Mn, I know the answer.” Duan FeiZhou made fun of himself. “Then how come you’re in the trading house?”
“Your uncle bought me from that foreign worker. He treated me as the treasure of the store.” When it spoke on this topic, the Sword in the Stone’s tone became somewhat vain, as if it was honorable to be a stagnant item in a trading house.
“My uncle? You mean Joseph? You know I’m his nephew, right?”
“He used to talk about you a lot during the time before he died.” the Sword in the Stone smacked its lips.
This thing obviously didn’t even have a mouth, but it could make, “tsk” sound. How in the world did it do that?
“Then you must know how to go back, right?” he asked. “I mean, back to the real world, London. Those guests seem to go back through the stairwell tapestry, but what about me? Do I have to go that way too?”
The Sword in the Stone screamed, “You don’t know? You don’t know anything about it? Occult geometry? Not a clue? Nobody taught you?“
Duan FeiZhou said hesitantly, “I have learned geometry but without the word ‘secret method’…”
“I’m not going to lie, I did pretty well in math on the college entrance exam. Ah, no. You also don’t know what the college entrance examination is.”
The Sword in the Stone muttered, “You’re really something, Joseph Chester, getting a layman who doesn’t know shit to inherit the trading house. How did I meet such a business geek as you?“
“I have the same question.” Duan FeiZhou said seriously.
“Forget it. I was probably born to be a nanny. The tapestry is a guest passage, and guests can enter and exit the trading house through the spell on it. As for you, didn’t you notice the spell formation on the clock?“
Duan FeiZhou turned to look at the gold clock behind the counter. The clock dial indeed had a seven-manifold spell formation drawn on it. He scrambled to set the hands back to exactly 12 o’clock and closed the customer aisle to prevent any more customers from entering the place by mistake.
“That spell can only be used by the owner of the trading house. You touch it gently, think of the place you want to go back to, and it will activate the spell.”
Duan FeiZhou recalled the house at 49 Franchise Square. The moment he moved his thoughts, a powerful suction force sucked him into the void, he spun up fast, and then…
“Sword in the Stone, you’ve smashed me!” Duan FeiZhou climbed up from the study carpet.
“You were the one who had to hold me!” the Sword in the Stone shouted.
However, he was at least back. He had absolutely no real sense of how long he had been in the Secret Trading House, but the wall clock told him that it was now twelve midnight. The most thrilling and exciting day in Duan FeiZhou’s life had finally come to an end. He sincerely hoped that such excitement would not come a second time, but when he thought of the difficult situation he faced, he had to admit pessimistically that his hopes were very slim. He collapsed on the sofa, “Well, at least those customers won’t dare to come to the trading house anymore.”
“You seem happy?” the Sword in the Stone asked.
Duan FeiZhou said, “Of course. I don’t want to take over this business at all!”
The Sword in the Stone questioned, “Why?“
“I met two Nightmen before I came to London! If they knew I was the owner of the Secret Trading House, wouldn’t I be dead? Besides, I’m rich now, and I can live happily with nothing to do every day, so why should I ask for trouble?”
“Joseph not only left you a trading house full of treasures, but also gifted you with such a generous inheritance! Do you only want to enjoy your wealth, and not do your duty?“
Duan FeiZhou threw the Sword in the Stone on the floor with one hand. It said, “ouch!” and made a sound.
“Don’t morally blackmail me! Do you know what kind of life I’ve been living for the past three years? Those riches are not ‘gifts’ at all! It’s more like ‘compensation’!”
“But whether you like it or not, you are already the owner of the trading house. Even if you have only entered the trading house once, the matter has been nailed down.” The Sword in the Stone’s tone became aggressive, “Those Nightmen police don’t care how many times you’ve been in business. You were already guilty the moment you walked into the trading house. They’ll just gleefully throw you into the dungeon, and then happily claim credit with their superiors.“
Duan FeiZhou was furious. “Stop it! Don’t you think I know that?”
“Since you are still clear-headed, you should take my advice. You should not only continue to run the trading house, but also learn the occult philosophy so that one day, when the Nightmen come to trouble you, you will be able to defend yourself.“