Editors: Nyxnox, Xu Xian
Chapter 131 Mantra
Gu Shenwei was so frightened that his body had froze. Even if the dead had really come back to life it would not make him so afraid, but that monk's smile had a magical power that made him as timid as a shadow being exposed to the sun.
"Finally, you're here. Where's the other patroness? Call her inside, as we might as well have a talk."
When the monk opened his mouth, Gu Shenwei finally realized that he was not quite the same as the Tiger Monk. His voice was lower and he looked a bit older. The two should be brothers.
Gu Shenwei usually would not accept this kind of invitation according to his habitual suspicious disposition, but this monk somehow gave off a feeling of posing no threat at all and he subconsciously believed he was safe. So he pushed the door open, came in and sat his heels on a futon opposite the monk, his unsheathed narrow sabre on the ground.
Not long after, Lotus also walked inside, her expression showing that she was even more startled than Gu Shenwei. She had killed Master Tiger Monk with her own hands, how could she not be frightened to see such a similar person? But she also subconsciously relaxed her vigilance, entered the meditation abode, and sat on another futon.
The three of them sat silently on each side, only the flame of the candle flickering quietly.
The monk put away his smile, lowered his head and his lips moved a bit, as if he were reciting a mournful verse. He raised his head after a long time and smiled again. Pointing at the last bit of candle, he said, "Candles have wicks; wax has no wick. Junior brother Lian Xin must have gone to the World of Ultimate Bliss."
Lotus also noticed that this monk was not Master Tiger Monk now. Coldly, she said, "I'm afraid the Buddha's Western Pure Land would not take a monk who lied."
The monk's religious name was Lian Hua, and he was Tiger Monk Lian Xin's elder brother before they became monks. Unlike his approachable younger brother, Master Lian Hua's words were abstract. He said many things which were incomprehensible for the two teenagers and continued to talk in the darkness without caring about the extinguished candle. To simplify his speech, he wished for the two teenagers to shave their hair and become Buddhists.
Master Tiger Monk had played a great joke on the two teenagers.
The Lian Xin and Lian Hua brothers had studied the clay tablet of Death Sutra for many years. And they found out that it had a similar effect as the Buddhist mantra, both of which used the pronunciation of the words to send vibrations through the meridians of the whole body to produce all kinds of magical effects.
The two had practised this method for a long time and were determined to express their Dao and use the Buddhist mantra to deliver all living creatures from torment. So they had made a great prayer in front of the statue of the Buddha: Invent a set of mantra that could calm people's murderous heart and have all the murderers in the world to lay down the butcher's knife. Their first targets were the killers of Golden Roc Castle.
This set of Mantra had been invented just before Golden Roc Castle asked for the exorcism scripture. Master Tiger Monk believed that this was a Buddha-sent chance. He had thought about persuading all six teenagers to learn the Mantra, but on the first night Lotus had secretly run to him and shown a page of the book Death Sutra that he had never seen.
Tiger Monk was greatly surprised and also changed his mind. He decided to test the Mantra's effect on Lotus first. So with the excuse of teaching Lotus the correct pronunciation of the Death Sutra, he had taught part of the Mantra invented by him and his brother to Lotus. The Monk had also seen Lotus transfer it to Servant Huan. As for the exorcism scripture of about one thousand characters or so on the clay tablet he taught, it was all accurately written and taught and had nothing to do with the Mantra.
Master Tiger Monk didn't think that he had lied, because nine times out of ten, the pronunciation of the characters in the Mantra were chosen from the Death Sutra. It was only that the order of the characters had been reversed and was quite different from the original text. Gu Shenwei and Lotus had no clue about this at all and surprisingly didn't even have any doubts about the pronunciation.
Master Tiger Monk had followed through with his agreement with Lotus and didn't tell anyone about the reappearance of the whole book of Death Sutra. But he had written Master Lian Hua a letter, telling him clearly about the process of how he had 'lured' the two teenagers to learn the Mantra. He was very excited in writing the letter and thought that this was the first step in removing all killing aura under heaven.
Master Lian Hua had read the letter and found some clues. He came over to sort out the remainings after Master Tiger Monk's death and found a few pages of his younger brother's notes. He immediately understood that those two teenagers surprisingly had the complete version of Death Sutra.
Master Lian Hua learned the whole story through this. It was at his insistence that the Four Noble Truths Temple hadn't investigated the responsibility of Master Tiger Monk's death.
Master Lian Hua lamented, "This is the cycle of karma. Junior brother Lian Xi went through painstaking efforts to create this set of Mantra. He was overjoyed to teach it for the first time, but became too obsessed and surprisingly lost his life to his own tiger. Pity, what a pity."
The monk didn't seem to know that Master Tiger Monk's 'accidental' death was caused by Lotus.
There were about 10,000 characters for the complete set of Mantra, the two monks dared not call it a 'Sutra', so they named it the 'Essay of Severing Obsession'. The part they taught the two teenagers only had 3000 characters or so and most of them belonged to the chapter of ''Elimination of Misfortunes for the Living'. "The two benefactors must have become kind-hearted now. The two benefactors only need to follow me and finish learning the remaining Mantra. If you recite it every day, you will even obtain the Bodhi Heart. You two have the root of wisdom that can lead you to the truth. It really was fate for you to have accidentally met junior brother Lian Xin and learned the Mantra from him…"
If no one stopped him, the monk would probably keep talking until it was bright outside. Gu Shenwei and Lotus couldn't bear it any longer. They didn't expect that an eminent monk would use flaws to 'harm' others, and they had surprisingly become the experimental subjects.
"We will not become a monk or nun." Gu Shenwei interrupted the monk's endless preaching. Thatched cottage, lonely candle, eminus monk. The mysterious aura created by the circumstances had all disappeared now. He only cared about one problem now, "I don't want to remove my murderous heart. Tell me, how do I stop the Mantra from working?"
Master Lian Hua told the truth, "It's simple, just forget the Mantra."
Gu Shenwei and Lotus had already tried this trick. The Mantra had 5000 or so characters and was very difficult to articulate. They had spent a great deal of time memorizing them, which were now imprinted into their minds. How could it be possible to forget it so easily? When they listened to the monk's story, several paragraphs of the text had actually unwittingly appeared in front of them.
"Is there any other way?"
Master Lian Hua shook his head, "No, it was created by junior brother Lian Xin and me. Except for you two, nobody else has learnt it before. To tell you the truth, even I didn't expect the Mantra to have such a good effect. I thought that it might take several more days until I saw the two benefactors come here looking for answers."
The anger in Gu Shenwei's heart felt like it could almost burn down the thatched cottages. He picked up the narrow sabre on the floor and pointed it at the monk, "The effect is not that good. I can still kill, test me if you don't believe me."
Master Lian Hua didn't flinch or dodge. He smiled and said, "I can try."
Gu Shenwei was dumbfounded. Lotus stopped him just before he was about to stab out, "Wait, let him teach us the correct pronunciation of the Death Sutra first."
Gu Shenwei felt ashamed with himself. He was so angry that he almost forgot the most important matter. The Death Sutra was effective after all. It was just that Master Tiger Monk had reversed the characters and taught the fake sutra. The best way to forget about it was to learn the real sutra.
Master Lian Hua was still undisturbed, "It is really a good thing that the two benefactors are also interested in Death Sutra. We have the same interest and can study it together after two benefactors shave the hair and become Buddhists. Junior brother Lian Xin had left several pages of tips and notes, so we can decode the remaining sutra with half the effort."
The monk was unmoved no matter how the two teenagers forced or begged him. He would not teach them any characters or pronunciations if the two teeangers didn't become Buddhists.
The monk wasn't afraid of death and was extremely obstinate in believing that the two benefactors had reduced their murderous hearts and would have difficulties killing again. He didn't care even if the narrow sabre was placed on his neck or his fingers, and simply kept on explaining the benefits of being monks.
It was already growing bright outside. Gu Shenwei and Lotus hadn't gained even a single character's pronunciation of the Death Sutra from the Monk. Both of them became very anxious. They bound the monk with the twine that they had brought with them, gagged him with a rag, and decided to take him into the city to severely question him later.
Master Lian Hua was submissive. Someone else, however, was unwilling.
No one knew how long that tall, headstrong monk had stayed next door. He might have been there and heard the whole process, and couldn't bear it any longer when he heard the two teenagers trying to kidnap Master Lian Hua. He roared, broke down the earthen wall and rushed inside.
"Put down my senior brother! You two murderous bastards. You killed senior brother Tiger Monk, and I want revenge!"
It turned out the monk had already known that the death of Tiger Monk was man-made and Master Lian Hua just didn't mention it.
Gu Shenwei and Lotus were astonished. As brown-belted killers, one of the important trainings they had received was to hear sound from all directions. That earthen wall was as thin as a wooden board, but they surprisingly didn't know that it had hidden a eight or nine foot high monk behind it.
Although the two's murderous hearts had been suppressed, their killing will hadn't been affected. They were only stunned for a moment before they stabbed at the headstrong monk. What they used was exactly the the Death Sutra Swordsmanship.
They hadn't lost in any real combat situation since they had mastered this set of swordsmanship. As long as they drew the sabre, they would definitely kill a person. It was not until they met this rash monk that they realized that there were endless martial arts in this world, and there were always stronger ones out there.
The rash monk was unarmed, but he wasn't panicked at all when facing with two sharp sabres that were as quick as lightning. He took one step forward, and reached out with his hands. He easily seized the weapons and casually broke them, throwing them on the ground afterwards. Then without saying anything, he lifted Master Lian Hua up, removed the rag from the Master's mouth, and broke the twine.
The rash monk's movements were all made in an easy manner. It was as if he were a giant in a porcelain shop, trying to be careful to not break anything, but still razing the shop to the ground with the slightest force.
As soon as Master Lian Hua could open his mouth, he kept saying 'my fault', then he introduced the rash monk to the benefactors, "Junior brother Lian Ye doesn't have enough concentration, and has frightened you. Please forgive him, he didn't mean it …"
Gu Shenwei exchanged a look with Lotus and knew that they were in big trouble now. They had met a monk who didn't take death seriously, and a monk whom they couldn't defeat or kill. They had lost the whole game.
Master Lian Hua continued to exhort the teenagers to be Buddhists. Lian Ye, however, paced back and forth because his mind had been stirred up after attacking the two. He chanted Amitabha one moment, then danced and shouted revenge in another. No one knew which of the two monks was normal and which was mad.
Gu Shenwei understood now. This headstrong monk with incredible kung fu skills was the 'tiger' beside Master Lian Hua, but he was more formidable than real tigers. With his sharp claws and teeth, he could kill anyone at any time.
They could neither use force to obtain the real sutra, nor persuade the monk. So there was only one choice left.
Lotus was in the same frame of mind as Servant Huan. At the same time, the two turned, leapt out of the cottage and hurried down the mountain. They found the horses and sped up to return to the city. Being far away, they seemed to still be able to hear Master Lian Hua's persuasion and Monk Lian Ye's angry roar.
It was already dawn now. The two teenagers were so disheartened that they didn't even have the strength to comfort each other. They didn't know that this was only the first trouble of the day. Another trouble was waiting on their way back, and a new pile of trouble was brewing back in the city.