Chapter 1: Soul of the Dragon
Translated by me, edited by Kai.
“Hey, Jiang you’re back!”
“Did you buy anything good to eat?”
Just after entering the community, a couple of aunties who were sunbathing called out to Jiang Hai who smiled back and lightly nodded.
While showing off today’s catch, Jiang Hai told the aunties that he had gone fishing by the river.
“Jiang ah, did you tell your wife about the stuff I previously told you about? What are her thoughts on them?” One of the aunties carefully called out while slowly walking over.
“Uh, I told her about it, she said she will think it over, but did not give me a clear answer.” Jiang Hai answered reluctantly as a hint of embarrassment flashed over his face.
“Sigh, These rich people are always occupied, but no matter how busy they are, they’re still rich right? Ha ha” The auntie said as she patted Jiang Hai’s arm.
Under the auntie’s laughter, Jiang Hai flashed an awkward smile at the auntie’s laughter and continued home. As he walked through the door, JiangHai dropped his fake smile, sighed and bitterly looked at the lonely eight room house. Smiling rancorously, he carried the bucket and headed to the kitchen. As he passed through the living room, his gaze wandered to the dreary arrangement of three medium sized wedding photos. In them, there are two people, a stylish man and a beautiful woman. Although they are wedding photos, there is no trace of a smile on the woman’s face. Every time Jiang Hai sees the frosty face, a slight headache appears; this is not the type of life he dreamed of.
JiangHai shook his head to clear his thoughts.
“Is there any use to think so much? Once I’ve finally finished everything, I should quickly find a job so that I can pay back the debt I owe her and get a divorce.” JiangHai slowly encouraged himself as he begins to prep the fish in the kitchen.
Jiang Hai, born in 1988, 27 this year, born in China’s northernmost province’s capital city, Harbin.
His life was rather ordinary with a spark of excitement. Before he turned 26, he was a badly spoiled kid in a single child family. His parents were ordinary civil servants, not a large income but enough to get by.
He attended school just like any other normal kid, first elementary school, then middle school and finally high school. Due to his poor grades in high school, he had no choice but to attend a lower ranked university for a degree said to be universal; financial management. During the four years of university, with the exception of first year, he attended about thirty classes in the other three years add all together. Most of his time was wasted reading manga in the dorm or playing games at an internet cafe. He just didn’t have another solution, his university’s internet was just that bad. The only good part about the university was that fact that a payment of 200 yuan ($30 US) per class was enough to pass. Saving him lots of potentially dead brain cells (1). After graduation when he was 23 years old, he received a job at a local trading company through family connections.
Everyday life was very normal and dull. The year he turned 26, the 3rd year of working for the company, everything changed (then the fire nation attacked!!). First, it was his father’s accidental death, followed by his mother being hospitalized due to not being able to handle the trauma. After his girlfriend found out about this, she decisively broke up with him and ran off with a department manager. And because of this connection, Jiang Hai was relieved of his position of which he spent 3 years of sweat and tears for. In order to treat his mother’s illness, he sold their family home, but still did not have enough money for surgery. At this moment his present “wife” showed up, loaned him 400,000 yuan for his mother’s surgery, but as a return they must get married.
The surgery was a complete success, but his mother did have any thoughts of living left. She died a year after the surgery, which was last month. The death of both parents left Jiang Hai in a very sorrowful state, but life still needs to go on. In this world, the Earth will continue spin no matter what. This is an irrefutable fact. But if Jiang Hai wants to start all over, then he must think of a way to pay off his “debt first”.
Speaking of his wife, Qi Li, is not an average person. The two can be said be childhood friends. They grow up together, and both sets of parents worked in the same factory. However in ’92, his present “father-in-law” started to engage in trade. There were both good and bad times, in 2000, he successfully stabilized and moved the family to Beijing.
Since then, both families pretty much stopped communicating with each other, except for the occasional phone call during holidays and new years. Today, the Qi family company is estimated to be worth several billion yuan. Although it does not all belong to their family, but it is close enough. Furthermore, Qi Li appears to be even more slim and graceful, being comparable to those movie stars and sometimes even surpassing them.
A graduate from a top tier American university, she is an elite of the elite. She only made one major mistake in her life which lead to the marriage between Jiang Hai and her. This piece of information was something Jiang Hai had to inquire others for. Due to his current social standings, Qi Li will never tell him the real truth. This story is pretty much like those prime time wealthy T.v. drama shows.
During the time when Qi Li was still attending school, she found a boyfriend. At the end when she returned back to China, she found out that this boyfriend is from her family’s rival company. Although the two of them were madly in love, one day Qi Li accidentally let slip some news about her family’s company’s investments. Once this news reached her boyfriend’s dad, the Qi company easily lost over a billion yuan.
The company’s estimated worth immediately halved, and when Qi Li’s father received the news, a sudden heart attack took his life. As a result this pair of lovers became bitter enemies over night. Qi Li is determined to take control of her father’s company, but the company’s board members disagree. In their view, women are just women since her father was angered to death because of her boyfriend, who can guarantee this woman won’t run the company into bankruptcy? So as to take over the company and for the company vote, her mother thought of a brilliant solution. A sham marriage. Which would show, on the surface, that she has cut connections with her boyfriend.
Jiang Hai was chosen to be her partner in this sham marriage. Since the marriage began, Qi Li only spend one night here and slept in separate rooms. The day after, she left the house and lived at the company. After a year of development, she stabilized the company, but Jiang Hai had lost his original feelings for this relationship. Now his only goal is to quickly earn money to repay his debt to her and restart his good old days.
*slash*. As studies have shown, some tasks cannot be completed halfheartedly. For example, cleaning fish。 Since the catch is from the nearby freshwater river, anyone who has fished there will know that all the fish there are small and wild (2). There are basically two types of fish in the rivers near Harbin. One of them is the carp, and the other type is whiting, which has great flavor, but it is just too small. To eat this type of fish most people just cook them straight up, but Jiang Hai likes to remove the intestines before eating it. Now, while removing the intestines, he accidentally cut himself.
In this fish’s belly there is a small white pearl. Not knowing what the pearl is made of, but it is very difficult to handle. A single moment of carelessness caused the pearl to poke a bloody hole on Jiang Hai’s hand.
“Fk, rea…” Staring at his bleeding hand, Jiang Hai starts cursing. He picked up the strange pearl in order to figure out what it is, but before he could finish his examination, the pearl vanished. Before Jiang Hai could finish his sentence, he collapsed on the ground and fainted.
The instant he fainted, the original hole on his hand slowly disappeared. A ray of white light started to rise from Jiang Hai’s body. If he was awake at this moment, then it would not be hard to see that the white light is coming from the small pearl.
As the pearl rises into the air none stop, a series of ka ka sounds can be heard coming from it. Just like an egg. As the crack sounds begin to soften, a white wormish thing crawled out from the pearl. Without even looking around, it directly entered Jiang Hai’s body. As Jiang Hai’s body shook, a snake like tattoo starts to form on his body.
At this moment in time, Jiang Hai’s consciousness is experiencing a mystical show. It would appear that he become a dragon. A very long, very mystical dragon. This dragon’s power can also be said to be awe inspiring to the point where people start shivering at the mention of it. The main thing is that this dragon is the leader of whole dragon tribe. He led them into constant war against legendary enemy tribes of phoenixes and kirins. These wars made the world shake non-stop.
When the three tribes finally exhausted all their tribe’s war potential, a group of daoists suddenly appeared. They began to accuse him of all kinds of charges trying to tame him. When he attempted to resist, the leading daoist, who is much stronger, sealed him under a large mountain range. After the passing of eons, he starts to slowly lose his power, and his life. Finally, left with only a sliver of his soul, he fell into the underground water system and left the cavern he was sealed in.
This sliver of soul is nothing but that small pearl of light. It is unknown how long the pearl had drifted for, but today, it was picked up by Jiang Hai. When Jiang Hai had finally woken up, a whole day had already passed, and the fish from yesterday had started to stink. But Jiang Hai spared no thought for the fish as he dazedly stared at his brand new tattoo.
“Was this whole dream real?”
1. No one likes to write university level final exams, I think everyone who wrote at least one can understand the pain.
2. Chinese attitude: wild > farmed. If its free exploit it, thus no big fish exist in the rivers of China anymore
Exchange rate: 6.66 Yuan = 1 USD