Chapter 1082: Breaking Out
Zu An snorted coldly and used primordial ki to send the coffin flying back.
The coffin was blasted to pieces with a loud noise, smoke and dust rushing in all directions.
It could have been stone powder, or something like bone ashes.
Zu An didn’t know whether the thing was poisonous either… Even though he was immune to most poisons, he wouldn’t be so stupid as to stick his head in to give it a taste.
He used the recoil force to back up some distance.
However, the marriage sedan was waiting behind him and took the chance to pull him inside.
Zu An stored up his power, intending to have a final showdown with Paper Bride.
However, the marriage sedan was completely empty.
It was just him inside.
Everything around him was red.
Unsurprisingly, he couldn't push the windows or curtains open.
He already had experience dealing with such things, so he used his primordial ki and charged straight through the sedan’s roof.
However, he was stunned to discover that the sedan was nowhere to be seen, and the coffin was gone.
Furthermore, the forest was also gone.
He found himself in a peasant home; it was a small courtyard with a hedge around it, and it had a few simple and crude rooms.
At the moment, however, the place was decorated with lanterns and colored banners.
The words ‘double happiness’ were plastered everywhere.
There was clearly a marriage ceremony ongoing.
There were more than ten dishes arranged on the table, with people of many different ages seated around it.
Judging from their outfits, they looked like the neighboring residents of the village.
Zu An frowned.
The people were probably more clones made from paper.
Seeing that Paper Bride didn’t plan to attack him, he didn’t feel like attacking them either, however.
He instead looked around for the main villain instead.
“The auspicious time has arrived.
Please come out, bride and groom!” the master of ceremonies in the main hall called out after clearing his throat.
A burst of intense coughing followed.
It sounded as if the person’s heart were splitting and his lungs were cracking apart, as if he might cough them out at any time.
Zu An followed the source of the noise and saw someone dressed like the groom walk over.
No, he didn’t come over on his own, but was rather being supported by two other individuals.
His entire body was weak; his legs moved feebly.
If not for the fact that he had two people supporting him, he might have already fallen to the ground.
That’s the groom Zu An frowned.
The groom wore makeup and was dressed up, but even so, his complexion was still pale like a sheet of paper, as if he didn’t have much life force left at all.
You’re already about to die, and yet you’re still getting married
The fellow villagers whispered among themselves.
“The Cai clan’s kid looks as if he’s already about to kick the bucket.
Why is he getting married now”
“Haven’t you heard The Cai clan purchased a child bride for their son precisely because of his illness.
They originally planned to get married after a few years, but this son doesn’t seem as if he can hold on for much longer anymore.
That’s why they’re holding this marriage celebration now to see if it can save their son’s life.”
“Sigh, the Dou clan’s girl really is unfortunate.
She’s pretty, and she’s diligent in her work, but she had to marry this sickly guy.
She might become a widow soon after she gets married.”
“Shush, you came for the food and drink, right You’ll get chased out if you say such unlucky things!”
“What are you so scared of The Cai clan’s master has already died.
The only man in that clan is this sickly son; who’s even going to do anything to me”
Suddenly, there was a cry of alarm as the new bride emerged.
“Even though her face is covered, just her figure alone doesn’t look bad at all.”
“You’ve been away for a while, so you haven’t seen her.
She’s definitely this entire region’s flower!”
“Sigh, what a pity…”
Zu An’s eyes couldn't help but narrow when he saw the bride who had emerged wearing bright red wedding clothes.
The clothes she wore were exactly the same as Paper Bride’s.
Unfortunately, her head was veiled, so he couldn't see her face.
Zu An was getting a bit impatient from waiting.
He prepared to rush out and seize Paper Bride.
But just when he was about to rush out, the villagers turned pale with fright and held him back, exclaiming, “Young master, you can’t! The bride’s cover can only be undone by the groom, or else it’ll bring much bad luck!”
Zu An was speechless. Are you all blind Why are you treating me like some young thug who wants to tease the new bride
He was just about to explain himself when a disturbance suddenly filled the main hall.
The groom had vomited a mouthful of blood after an intense burst of coughing.
Then, he had fallen to the ground.
Because they had been about to carry out the ritual kneeling, the groom’s helpers had temporarily let go of him.
However, they hadn’t expected something to happen in that brief period of time.
The two quickly dropped down to support him, but their expressions turned deathly pale.
They said with trembling voices, “Brother Cai… is already gone!”
Madam Cai threw herself over to the body when she saw that and began to sob.
The entire place was filled with noise.
In the end, the wedding became a funeral.
The red cloth and words of celebration were torn off, replaced with white cloth and words of peace.
Zu An realized something.
No wonder he had ended up encountering both a bride escort and a funeral procession at the same time, and the two had run into each other.
It seemed they had been referring to this moment.
The bride also changed into new clothes, coming back out in mourning clothes.
She didn’t wear a red cover this time, so Zu An finally saw her appearance.
Who else could it be but Paper Bride However, she looked much younger.
The hint of bashfulness between her brows would make it difficult for others to associate her with Paper Bride.
Zu An exclaimed with a snort, “Paper Bride, what the hell are you trying to do here Did you think I wouldn’t recognize you just because you changed your appearance a bit”
Zu An rushed forward to grab her, but the girl shrunk back in fear.
He felt everything before his eyes blur, and the scene quickly changed.
There were no more visitors in the courtyard.
The funeral cloth strips were also gone.
Instead, Zu An witnessed the lives of Paper Bride and Madam Cai, who had become mutually dependent on each other for survival.
They would burn incense for the deceased son and husband every day.
But for some reason, Zu An felt there was something strange about the place.
However, if one were to ask him how, he wouldn't exactly be able to say.
Zu An was just about to confront Paper Bride, but he ran into a father and son pair instead.
The father and son resembled each other; they seemed to be surnamed Zhang.
They were the local tyrants of the village.
The Cai clan didn’t have any men left, so they had set their eyes on the two ladies.
Madam Cai couldn't withstand the pressure, so she ended up giving herself to Elder Zhang.
However, Paper Bride was unyielding.
She refused to submit to Young Master Zhang.
She was quick-witted.
Furthermore, seeing as Madam Cai had become Young Master Zhang’s stepmother, she made use of that status to protect herself.
But Young Master Zhang was furious, causing malice to grow within him.
He sought out a poison.
One day, when Madam Cai fell ill and wanted some sparerib soup, Paper Bride helped her make some.
Along the way, young master Zhang poisoned the soup.
His original plan was to have Paper Bride poison Madam Cai to death, because with that, he would have all the leverage in the situation.
Furthermore, without the protection of Madam Cai, Paper Bride alone wouldn’t be able to prevent him from possessing her.
However, never could he have imagined that he had poisoned the wrong soup, instead causing Elder Zhang’s death.
News quickly grew out of hand.
For fear that the investigation would be traced back to him, Young Master Zhang framed Paper Bride as the one who had poisoned his father to death.
Young Master Zhang bribed the county governor to torture Paper Bride into a confession.
She was quickly escorted to the execution grounds.
Paper Bride suffered incredible injustice, swearing her grievances to the heavens.
Six months passed after her death, as she harbored three years of resentment…
Zu An began to ponder to himself when he saw that scene.
Why does this seem so similar to the ‘Injustice to Dou E’ He even seemed to have heard someone call Paper Bride Lady Dou before. Don’t tell me this Paper Bride is really Dou E
Suddenly, everything before his eyes blurred.
Paper Bride, dressed in prisoner clothes and locked up in shackles, appeared in front of him.
She stared at him with pitiful eyes and asked, “Young master, do you think Young Master Zhang should have died or not”
“Of course he…” Zu An began.
Even though Paper Bride was his enemy, after seeing her backstory, anyone would feel sympathy.
However, he stopped halfway and suddenly became vigilant.
He had felt as if something wasn’t right for some time.
Now, he finally realized why.
In the clan residence, and even in the main hall later on, he had never seen a mirror from start to finish! How could a normal family not have such a thing No wonder he had always felt that something wasn’t right.
A terrifying suspicion appeared in his mind.
He quickly took out King Qi’s Mirror of Souls and held it in front of himself.
At that moment, he looked exactly the same as Young Master Zhang!
He immediately understood and replied to Paper Bride with a sneer, “This was your plan, wasn’t it You were going to show me your past, then use my feelings of pity to help you kill Young Master Zhang.
And yet, those who entered this world would have no idea that they’d already unknowingly become Young Master Zhang.
If they said Young Master Zhang deserved death, that would satisfy certain principles of this world.
Then, you would be able to kill them.”
No wonder those fellow villagers had stopped him.
They had known that Young Master Zhang coveted the bride’s beauty, because he was the one who wanted to remove the wedding cover.
The scene around him shattered when he said that, and he once again returned to the frozen cave.
The gentle Lady Dou was nowhere to be seen; instead, the flirtatious and sinister Paper Bride was in front of him again.
At the moment, there was blood trickling out from the corner of her mouth; she had clearly suffered from an intense rebound.
“It’s been so many years, and yet you were the only one who was able to see through the illusion.” Paper Bride had a reluctant expression on her face as she stared rigidly at him.
“There have been countless experts with cultivation greater than mine, but in the end, they still fell inside that world.
Just how did you see through it”
1. Dou E Yuan, commonly translated as The Injustice to Dou E, and also known as Snow in Midsummer, is a Chinese play written by Guan Hanqing (c.
1241–1320) during the Yuan dynasty.
The full Chinese title of the play is Gan Tian Dong Di Dou E Yuan, which roughly translates to The Injustice to Dou E that Touched Heaven and Earth.
The story follows a child bride-turned-widow, Dou E, who is wrongly convicted of crimes by a corrupt court official for actions perpetrated by a rejected suitor, Zhang the mule.
After her execution, three prophesied phenomena occur to prove her innocence, including blood raining from the sky, snow in June, and a three-year drought.
After a visit from the ghost of Dou E, her father eventually brings the corrupt court official, a doctor, and Mule Zhang to justice, thereby vindicating his daughter.
Today, the phrase "snowing in June" is still widely used among Chinese speakers as a metaphor for a miscarriage of justice.
The story was repeatedly used and modified by later dramatists and remains one of Guan's most popular works. ☜