½ Prince Volume 1: The Beginning of a Legend
Original novel in Chinese by: 御我 (Yu Wo)
Extra Chapter: Yu Lian VS Ugly Wolf – translated by Erialis
“Wolf-dàgē, do you think the timing for my spell just now was okay? Is there any area that I should work on?” Yu Lian asked bashfully.
“Not at all, I think it was really well done. The timing, direction, and strength of the magic were all perfect,” replied Ugly Wolf with a gentle smile.
Yes, it was pretty well done, but I think she would do even better if she didn’t stop to ask Wolf-dàgē for his opinion – and end up chatting for ten minutes – each time she finished casting a spell, I thought exasperatedly. I continued to fight mob after mob, even as I rolled my eyes N number of times at the couple, who were happily chatting away.
“It’s been so long and they’re still there in their private little world, and they’re not even paying the rest of us any attention. Their behavior’s…going to make me die of envy,” I complained as I cast yet another somewhat aggrieved glance at the two.
“What are you envious for, Prince?” Lolidragon remarked sardonically. “You must be aware that you already have a super-ultra-beauty by your side, one of the most beautiful women on Earth–” Here she pointed at herself. “–As well as a super-ultra-hottie, whose looks have no rival in this universe,” she added, pointing at Gui. “Plus, if you’re bored, you can always admire your own peerlessly handsome looks…” Lolidragon muttered under her breath.
Right! Let’s see: So I can either be a lesbian and fall in love with Lolidragon or I can fall in love with Gui, who happens to be gay! And if I have too much time on my hands, I could always indulge in a spot of narcissism…
Great, just great! I thought, coldly mocking my own wonderful luck at attracting people.1 Waaah! There goes my self-confidence…
“Sigh, I really wish that Prince and I could be like them someday.” Gui’s expression was one of envy as well.
“Doll also really hopes to meet a prince on a white horse.” Doll’s expression clearly showed that she was lost in her own fantasy.
You could…just buy me a white horse to ride on?
“Sigh… I’m so envious!” The four of us said simultaneously, directing our resentful gazes at the beauty and the beast, who were still engaged in an intimate conversation.
With a slight smile on her face, Yu Lian walked over toward us. However, the moment her back was turned to Wolf-dàgē, her smile instantly vanished and her eyebrows furrowed. In a woeful tone, she said, “Everyone, I would like to ask you something… Does Wolf-dàgē have someone that he likes?”
“I don’t think so. I’ve never heard him mention anything about it!” I hesitated, thinking that something like that was just plain unlikely. “Did something happen to make you think that way?”
Yu Lian’s gaze was full of distress. Tears were welling up in her eyes, making the four of us panic. “Then why doesn’t Wolf-dàgē respond, no matter how many times I hint to him that I like him?”
“Um… Did you say it as clearly as possible?” Lolidragon asked carefully.
“I told him, if a guy as great as him wanted a wife, I’d definitely marry him… Was that not clear enough?” Yu Lian asked anxiously.
Lolidragon gave her a helpless look. “To most people, that would be sufficiently clear, but Odd Squad has two members who are very slow when it comes to feelings and one of them is Wolf-gē.”
“Who’s the other?” I asked, curious. It’s Doll, right?
“Ahem, that’s not important. What is important right now is that we should help out Yu Lian and Wolf-gē. After all, it’s not an everyday thing that such a lovely girl falls for Wolf-gē. How could we possibly idly stand by and just watch when Wolf-gē’s obliviousness might cost him the love of his life?” Lolidragon said virtuously. “Well guys, shall we help them?”
“Yes!” we roared enthusiastically.
“Yes to what?” Wolf-dàgē’s voice came suddenly from behind.
We turned around slowly, innocent smiles on our faces.
“Yes to training hard, Wolf-dàgē.” My smile was especially incandescent and artless.
“Yes, let’s all work hard!” Wolf-dàgē’s face broke into an ugly smile. Yu Lian gazed at him, drunk with happiness at the sight.
We stood in a line, waiting for Wolf-dàgē and Yu Lian to leave, engaged in a discussion about magic. Once they were out of earshot, we began to discuss amongst ourselves…
“How should we help them?” I asked.
“Write a confession letter in Yu Lian’s name,” Gui suggested.
“Prepare a romantic candlelit dinner for Wolf-gēge and Yu Lian-jiějie,” offered Doll.
“Slip Viagra into Wolf-dàgē’s drink,” said Lolidragon. When the three of us turned to glare at her, she said calmly, “It’s far more direct and simple. We’ll just use it as a last resort.”
Mission “Help Yu Lian to Catch a Husband”: Begin!
Gui immediately began to pen a confession letter. As for Doll and Lolidragon… After messing up five of the dishes I was trying to prepare, they were escorted out of the kitchen under my baleful gaze and the threat of my Black Dao. After that, they busied themselves with laying out the table instead.
Gui hurried excitedly toward to Wolf-dàgē, the finished letter in hand. The rest of us had followed him and were secretly watching from behind. “Wolf-dàgē, I found this letter lying on the ground on my way here and it’s addressed to you!”
“Is that so?” Ugly Wolf said, a dubious expression on his face as he took the letter from Gui, and began to read its contents aloud. “Warm rain falls; a gentle breeze shatters the frozen chill. The willow’s eyes and the plum’s cheeks – here is Spring, awaking. Yet who is there to share a cup of wine or talk of poetry with me? Tears melt the powder as the flower-pins on my head grow heavy. Clothes with their golden threads, I try them on; the cliffs of my pillow, they ruin my hair adornments. Alone, with only intense sorrow for company, without good dreams; I light a flower-lamp in the silence of the night. Yu Lian…”
The three of us turned ashen-faced. I hurriedly grabbed Gui and towed him back. “What on Earth did you write in that letter?” I demanded.
“Li Qing Zhao’s ‘Flower of Butterfly Love’.2 It’s a very touching poem,” Gui said in a moved voice. He was even dabbing away tears from the corners of his eyes. “I believe that after reading that poem, Wolf-dàgē will definitely understand Yu Lian’s heart.”
Is that so? I looked at Wolf-dàgē with a dubious expression. Will he really understand?
Just then, Wolf-dàgē beckoned me over.
“Prince, do you understand what this is talking about?” Wolf-dàgē asked softly, embarrassed.
“I do know! It means that I’m going to give Gui a sound beating,” I replied as I stretched my neck to loosen my muscles and clenched my fists tightly, cracking my knuckles.
I placed the last dish on the table and then looked at the candles, the fresh flowers, the snowy white table cloth, the white plates, and the bowls holding delicacies cooked with painstaking effort, as well as the star-studded skies. Ah, how romantic! Not for nothing did I get Lolidragon to “borrow” things from the local diner…
Hurriedly, Doll, Gui, Lolidragon, and I hid ourselves in the bushes by the candle-lit dinner and waited. After receiving our note, Wolf-dàgē and Yu Lian should come here and then enjoy this romantic candlelight dinner… Hehe! With that, their feelings will blossom!
“Prince, what are you guys doing? Why did you leave a note instead of using the team channel?” Wolf-dàgē’s suspicion-filled voice came from the team channel. Panicked, the four of us started pushing the blame, mentally cursing: Stupid online game, why must it have a team channel!
“Guys, don’t make a sound on team channel,” Lolidragon told the rest of us. “When Wolf-dàgē can’t get a response from us, he’ll definitely come here with Yu Lian.” We nodded.
“Forget it. I have no idea what they are doing. Yu Lian, are you hungry? Let’s go get a bite in town before we look for them,” Ugly Wolf said over team channel to Yu Lian, who was beside him.
I sat glumly at the table, watching as my painstakingly prepared meal was devoured by three gluttons. Waaah! I cooked all that for Wolf-dàgē and Yu Lian, so can you guys not gobble it all up so unceremoniously?!
“Hmph, I told you guys that your methods were no good. What’s the point of being so reserved?” Lolidragon swallowed the last mouthful of the goose drumstick that she had snatched from the other two before she continued haranguing us. “Using Viagra is so much simpler and faster. Once the deed is done, everything will be okay. After all, we all know that Wolf-dàgē is not the type of guy who would deny responsibility for his actions!”
“It can’t be helped, I guess. Since all our other plans have failed, it looks like we have no other choice.” I stood up, steeling my resolve. “Lolidragon, tell me where they sell Viagra. I’ll go and buy some.”
“Uhh…Why don’t you check and see if Watson’s3 sells it?” Lolidragon replied, her expression hesitant.
“I doubt that they sell it… Besides, since when did Watson’s open a store in Second Life?” Gui asked, looking at Lolidragon suspiciously.
I gave Lolidragon a savage cuff on the head.
“A bunch of half-assed ideas! Gah, All of you are useless! Looks like we’ll have to resort to this,” I said. I looked at my fist with a vicious glint in my eyes.
Seriously irked, I immediately rushed into town and bought a spiked club, a length of chains, a small knife, a bottle of hair cream, and a birdcage containing a white dove. Then I went in search of Yu Lian and Wolf-dàgē.
Upon locating them, I snuck up stealthily behind Wolf-dàgē with the club in hand. Yu Lian watched with eyes as wide as saucers as I rendered Wolf-dàgē unconscious with a direct hit to his head. As everyone else watched in stupefaction, I – a slender elf – bound a two-meter tall, physically impressive wolf up in chains and hauled him away!
“Lolidragon, Doll, you guys are to take Yu Lian to buy a wedding dress and do her makeup. We’ll meet at the church in an hour. Gui, come with me.”
“Yessir,” they chorused.
I took out the small knife and the hair cream, passing them to Gui as I said, “Make Wolf-dàgē look more presentable and like a proper gentleman. He’ll be married in an hour.”
“A proper gentleman?” Gui looked at Wolf-gē’s wolfish face. “I’m afraid that’s…impossible!”
“…A proper gentlewolf, then.”
With a two-meter tall wolfman slung over my shoulder, I walked toward the church, ignoring the startled expressions on the faces of passersby. In this brusque fashion, Gui and I stood waiting at the church’s entrance for the lovely bride, Yu Lian.
As I’d predicted, they had yet to arrive even after an hour and a half, and so I switched to the team channel and issued a final warning. “Ladies, I will give you another ten minutes. After that, I will auction off this male wolf on my shoulder.” With that, I could hear the sounds of them panicking.
“I’m here, don’t sell off my wolf!” Yu Lian came at a run, wearing a snow white wedding dress, her face the picture of anxiety.
Seeing that everything was ready, I dumped Wolf-dàgē on the floor. As expected, Wolf-dàgē had already regained consciousness. In a ferocious tone, I growled, “Yu Lian wants to marry you. Will you take her as your wife or not?”
Ugly Wolf looked at Yu Lian in astonishment, while Yu Lian lowered her head bashfully. In a slow voice, he said, “Do you really wish to marry me? I am only a priest, and have no way to protect you from monsters. I am an ugly wolf, with no handsome features to speak of. Nor am I a rich man and I cannot provide you with equipment. Knowing all that, do you truly wish to marry me?”
With a face shining with tenderness and resolve, Yu Lian replied, “You are a priest, so you stand by my side and aid our friends together with me. You may not have handsome features, but your kind heart is more valuable than that. You are not rich, but you have passion and treasure your friends deeply. To me, you are incomparably perfect.” Yu Lian took a deep breath and said, “Yes, I wish to marry you.”
Doll took out a handkerchief and dabbed at her tears. “This is so moving; Doll is going to cry.”
Lolidragon and I had long since begun to hug one another and cry. And Gui? That fellow who had tried to sneakily hug me had already been kicked all the way to the next street.
Wolf-dàgē’s face was bright red. “Yu Lian…”
I looked impatiently at the two furiously blushing, wordless individuals. Then I picked up Yu Lian with my right arm and Wolf-dàgē with my left (that’s the good thing about having a lot of strength! If you’re bored, you can drag people to the altar…) and kicked open the door to the church. With one person under each arm, I walked over to the pastor and said, “Pastor! Wedding!” With that, I dumped the two of them onto the floor.
The pastor began to rattle off the usual lines for a wedding ceremony. (My apologies, I was busy cleaning up the dove, since I was planning to release it later, so I didn’t pay any attention to what he said.) All I heard was the last few lines: “…Then, Yu Lian, do you take this man, Ugly Wolf, to be your husband, to comfort his soul in times of difficulty, to care for him in times of sickness, to be by his side from this day forth, and never to leave or forsake him?”
Yu Lian looked at Ugly Wolf briefly and in a passionate voice answered, “Yes, I do.”
“Ugly Wolf, do you also take this woman, Yu Lian, to be your wife, to comfort her soul in times of difficulty, to care for her in times of sickness, to be by her side from this day forth, and never to leave or forsake her?”
“Yes, I do,” Ugly Wolf said unhesitatingly.
Wooooo! Release the dove, release the dove! With a whoop of joy, I released the dove – a symbol of felicity – and roared, “Three cheers for Yu Lian-dàsăo!”
[½ Prince Volume 1 Extra Chapter End]
1 Luck at attracting people: The actual phrase used here is “桃花运” (prn. táo huā yùn) – táo huā refers to the cherry blossom flowers and yùn means luck. For its meaning, think of it as “the flower’s luck at attracting the birds and bees”. As such, Prince is mocking her own luck at attracting such weird people.
2 Li Qing Zhao’s “Flower of Butterfly Love”: The lines which Gui penned in the letter are actually the lines of a poem by a famous poetess in Chinese history, 李清照 (prn. lĭ qīng zhào). Li Qing Zhao (1084 to approx. 1155 A.D.) lived during the Song dynasty. She was born into a fairly well-to-do family, with a scholarly father and an artsy family, and began to write poems in her youth. When she was eighteen, Li Qing Zhao married. She was extremely close to her husband, and their marriage was a happy one until war and civil strife separated them. Her husband passed away approximately two years after, leaving her heartbroken.
«蝶恋花» (prn. dié liàn huā), the title of the poem, literally means “the flower of a butterfly’s love”. The poem is written in “wén yán wén”, a style of writing often used in poetry and even general writing in the past. The notable feature of wén yán wén is that it condenses many words into very few words. As a result, each line of the poem is actually packed with meaning, but it’s almost like reading a poem that only has nouns and adjectives in it. That’s one of the reasons why Wolf (and everyone else, except Gui) are absolutely lost after reading the poem – because very few people these days actually know how to read stuff written in wén yán wén!
In Chinese, the poem reads, “暖雨晴风初破冻，柳眼梅腮，已觉春心动。酒意诗情谁与共？泪融残粉花钿重。乍试夹衫金缕缝，山枕斜欹，枕损钗头凤。独抱浓愁无好梦，夜阑犹翦灯花弄。” (Note that the original poems rhymes.)
The persona is that of a lady, who is sitting by the window, admiring the view outside as Spring arrives. The willow’s leaves and the plum blossoms remind her of eyes and cheeks respectively, and she is reminded also of happier times early in her marriage. Seeing the beautiful sight, her feelings awaken – feelings of extreme sorrow. Her husband is away, and she remembers the times when he was by her side, and longs for his return.
Her sorrow overcomes her; her tears ruin her makeup and even the pins in her hair feel heavy. Thus, she stays indoors rather than head outdoors, even though she has already tried on the new clothes for Spring. She lies on her bed (thus her pillow dents – hence the mention of “cliffs”) and ruins her hair adornments. She attempts to find some peace in good dreams, but is unable to even enter the realms of sleep. Finally, it is already night, and in the silence she lights a lamp to lessen her solitude.
3 Watson’s: A famous convenience store. They sell shampoo, snacks, boxes, makeup, and even some medicines.