Chapter 69 – Fear
As the golden sun slowly descended from the West, changing from a golden hue to a sunset red, the surface of the stillness og the lake illuminated my wind-blown messy fur. As the stars and the moon filled the night sky, the last traces of warmth disappeared into the coldness.
In my dazed and half-awake state, I could hear what seemed like Bi Qingshen Jun’s sighs and breathing from the bell, but when I paused to think about whether I should ask if it was him, the sound quickly faded.
In the end, I awaken by the sound of a howling wolf. I stood up, shook my body to rid it of the grass and leaves, and then one step at a time, I walked towards the cave.
Seeing me return, the mouse that I had come across and captured in the cave back in Luoying Mountain, Mouse Jing, he immediately offered me a delicious carp to eat. Although I had an empty stomach, I had no desire to eat anything, and then just waved my paws to set him free. I then went towards the bear skin mat and sat there to continue to be in a daze.
After I had granted him freedom, Mouse Jing’s face was full of tears and he hurriedly knelt down to give me his many thanks, and then promptly ran out.
I suddenly remembered a problem, and immediately went to block his only exit.
“King, you…..didn’t you grant me a way out?” Mouse Jing’s two legs trembled from fear, and with slurred speech, he begged, “Cat…..cat chasing mouse is not fun.”
I stared at his semi human form and gently asked, “Why do you want to achieve enlightenment?”
“I…..I have only cultivated for 300 years, and just recently achieved enlightenment. I have not done anything bad…..and have overcome some stuff!! King, please have mercy!” Mouse Jing knelt down again with a forehead full of cold sweat.
I hesitantly asked again, “Why do you not want to become a mouse? And why would you spend 300 years to become a demon?”
“I…..” Mouse Jing gave several strange glance, and did not answer my question.
“Speak!” I flashed my claws out and mercilessly roared.
Mouse Jing limped to the ground from dread, and then hurriedly exclaimed, “Because I don’t want to be a mouse! A mouse’s lifespan is only 2 years, and there are predators everywhere! A cat will eat me, a snake will eat me, an owl will eat me…..I don’t want to sleep to sleep in the cold and damp cave for the rest of my life, and always be afraid of not seeing the sun next day!”
I blankly stared at him from shock, “But…..you are a mouse though.”
“That’s because the heavens did not let me choose my creation!” Mouse Jing wiped a single tear away, and then firmly said, “Thus I had to change my own fate with my own hands, every year, the number of mice that want to become immortals number to the tens of millions. They have to give up their pleasures and work hard in cultivation, but the vast majority still die at two years, and the ones that are successful are very few. But after one becomes a demon, there is still thousands of more years of penance to go, and only if you don’t do any evil or wrong doings, will you finally be able to become an immortal.”
“Why would one want to become an immortal?” I asked.
“Because I don’t want to live dishonorably under the claws of others, nor be frowned upon, and because I don’t want to be controlled by destiny, instead, I want to be in control of my own fate.” Mouse Jing became more excited little by little, and seeing that I did not give an answer, he suddenly lowered his head down and became scared, “I beg of you, don’t kill me…..I…..really don’t want to die…..”
I nodded my head, turned around and walked towards the cave, letting Mouse Jing to freely bolt away.
From within my brain came tingling sensations. I fell onto the rug on the ground with my eyes closed, and dreamt of returning to what appeared to be my homeland.
Tall buildings that almost reached the skies were everywhere. On the streets, there were many armored animals running about on the streets. And I, I was just an ordinary three-coloured calico cat, not a demon, and was not able to turn into a human.
At that time, the me had just learned how to jump and run, and liked to happily play and scratched on everything. Finally, when I broke a vase, a big hand had grabbed my neck and threw me to the bottom of the stairs. A little girl’s cries and a woman’s cursing sound could be heard by my ears nonstop.
I watched as the people on the streets came and went. The strange armored animals that let sharp piercing sounds had caused me to instantly become afraid, thus I quickly stood up my four little paws and crawled back up the stairs. I was surprised to see that the cold and big door had closed on me, locking me outside.
Meow woo~ I let out may whining calls out, hoping that the people inside would open up.
The steel doors were like a ruthless general. It showed no signs of moving.
Meow woo~ I hurriedly increased my volume and called out again. I kept scratching at the door in hopes that someone would hear and open the door to let me inside.
I called and called, until dusk arrived, until nightfall came, but the steel door did not open.
My voice had also become hoarse from screaming. I had become sensitive and fragile from fear. Many of the passersby stared at me and said, “Look, it’s another abandoned cat.”
Unfortunately, the me at the time did not understand their speech.
My shouts gradually died down and my throat had become painful. The more I called out, the more unbearable my stomach became, but I had stubbornly refused to leave the door.
The steel doors opened, and the woman holding a bag of garbage came out. I cheerfully wanted to enter the house, but I was kicked away with her foot and was told, “Don’t go in.”
Why can’t I go in? I just stood there and watched as the she was about to close the steel doors.
There was an unfamiliar little girl who passed by us, she couldn’t bear with it anymore and held me within her embrace. She said some stuff to the woman, which had caused them to start an argument. It became very noisy and very chaotic. In the end, the little girl held me and rushed into the stillness of night.
The hospital was filled with the scent of disinfectants and housed many beat and weak cats and dogs. The little girl pleaded for a very long time to the doctor wearing a white coat until he finally agreed to take me in.
Therefore, the little girl gently touched my head, and said some words to me with a face full of tears. She then placed me into a small iron cage, waved her hands and said, “I will come see you everyday.”
Meow woo~ I stepped away from the warm embrace, and once again became fearful. The doctor wearing a white lab coat came over to give me an overall inspection, and then went back to work.
I called out from day to night, and from night to day. My voice was no longer as sweet as it had been before and sounded even worst than a duck’s chirping. The little girl came to see me everyday, she would sadly say, “I’m sorry…..my family doesn’t allow pets, so I can only hope that you find a nice person that is willing to adopt you.”
I waited and waited, this nice person that she talked about never came.
Everyday, the white and long lab coats would shove some soup with rice to me. The quantity was not a lot, and so I began to rapidly lose weight. In just less than two weeks, I could already feel my skin against protruding bones.
I don’t remember which day it was, but in my most desperate moments, a man finally came and stopped in front of my cage. He let the doctor open the cage, and then held me in his arms and said, “Little kitten, do you want to come home with me?”
Who is this? I raised my head up to look at his face. The light that he had in his eyes were so beautiful, the hands that stroked my fur were so gentle, and his scent felt so familiar, like I’ve smelled this somewhere before.
After he and the long white lab coat greeted each other, he held me and left the hospital, and walked into the night.
I didn’t have any objections, and just wanted to be in his arms and did not want to leave.
I beg of you, don’t abandon me, ok?
I beg of you, don’t lock me out, ok?
I beg of you, stay with me for forever, ok?
It was like he could understand my voice, looking down at me with a smile, he said, “In the future, you will be called Hua Miao Miao, and we will be with each other forever.”
I nodded my head, and all of a sudden, his face and Bi Qingshen Jun’s face overlapped each other. They had the same gentle manner and the same scent, which made it difficult for me to tell who was who.
In my trance, I woke from my dream. He was not by my side, and only coldness was all around me.
I did not know when it was that the moon had exposed its face, but my heart had suddenly panicked.
Shifu…..where are you?
Miao Miao is scared.