Monday, 7 April 2014

The Emperor's Strategy (Original Title: The Tale of Su Ji's Coffin Shop) by Qing Yao (天子谋 (原名:苏记棺材谱)-青垚) : Scene 3

  Hello readers, I've thought about it and since I have so many favourite scenes, I will be translating pivotal scenes all the way till the end of the novel! It's not going to be full on translations as I'm going to skip bits and pieces here of politicking and what I consider to be the less "interesting" parts. So, if you are interested in following The Emperor's Strategy but can't read chinese, rest assured that if you follow my scene translations you should be able to follow the whole c-novel as I will summarise briefly what goes on in between. I guess, you can view this as decembi's abridged version of The Emperor's Strategy? Haha.

  So, don't fear that I will leave you broken-hearted, because as earlier promised, I will translate properly the ending/epilogue when we reach there and I guarantee that the ending is really good and just the kind of c-novel endings I love <3.

  Once Promised and Heavy Sweetness are official translation projects and will be updated at least once weekly. I haven't quite decided the schedule of The Emperor's Strategy. Sometimes it will be quick, because it's a short cute scene, sometimes it may be longer because the part is just too epic to cut short. Let's play by ear!

  Also, if you are wondering, this novel has 20 chapters and an epilogue. We are now in Chapter 2.

  So, enjoy! If you want to know who I root for, I root for Su Li Li! I like her much more than Jin Mi in Heavy Sweetness haha.

   It starts almost immediately after Scene 2. Su Li Li and Mu Tou spend their days in the Little Coffin Shop as per usual, making coffins and squabbling. Haha.

Scene 3: I won't take offence at women

  So the scene starts with Su Li Li being worried about Uncle Cheng's sickness.

  Although Mu Tou did not say anything, he took over a large part of Uncle Cheng's tasks, every day he worked from morning to night in the courtyard. Su Li Li started to teach him how to use a fengshui ruler to measure the dimensions of the coffin properly, what were the auspicious measurements and what were the inauspicious measurements.

  Mu Tou asked, "Even if the measurements were inauspicious, can it still hurt a corpse?"

  Su Li Li profoundly shook her head, "It can't hurt a corpse. If the coffin's measurement is inauspicious, the corpse can become a zombie."

  Mu Tou in a voice that was not warm nor fiery, "If you don't dig it out, even a zombie corpse cannot do anything."

  Su Li Li rolled her eyes and did not say anything.

  Mu Tou seeing that Su Li Li had nothing to say, his interest was provoked, he casually picked up a long piece of corner material, he straightened into a position, and slantingly hit her forehead. Su Li Li only felt wind blowing between her eyebrows, before she could react, she felt her gaze become blurry, and Mu Tou had already "swoosh swoosh swoosh" with one move touched the twelve main meridians on her whole body. Each meridian was a point that was fatal, and at each point he had just stopped half a cm away*.

  In an instant, Mu Tou resumed his position, Su Li Li stood dazed like an idiot.

  Although Mu Tou's expression was quite satisfied with himself, his face was still stiff, he restrainedly nodded his head then with a flick of his hand, the wood piece flew back into the material stack.

  Su Li Li suddenly awoke, she was furious: "If you have this capability to show off in front of me, then why were you chopped into several little pieces last time, such that I had to spent so much effort to join you back into one person again?!"

  Mu Tou's voice was deep and cold, "Why don't you ask how is the person who injured me?"


  "Dead." Mu Tou lightly said it then turned around to saw the wood.

  Seeing that Su Li Li was open-mouthed and speechless, he darkly added, "Whoever injures me with one knife one sword, I will take his life."

  Su Li Li hesitated for half a moment, seeing him concentrating, she still could not resist interrupting him and said, "That... I seem to have.... hit you before..."

  Mu Tou deeply looked at her, looking until Su Li Li felt her heart skipped, ".... Actually... it was only a joke..."

  Mu Tou did not speak.

  "I was only.... in a moment... furious...."

  All the good words Su Li Li could speak, she said. After she finished, Mu Tou raised his head, he looked half in despised and half in magnanimity, "I won't take offence with women." But in his eyes he could not hide laughter.

  Su Li Li gazed at his eyes and noddingly said, "If that is so, then I must as well hit you."

  She grabbed some wood shavings and threw it at Mu Tou's head. Mu Tou's sleeves seemed to carry the wind, with a swish, the wood shavings flew back onto Su Li Li's body. Su Li Li threw again, Mu Tou swished his robes again.

  After half a day, Su Li Li cried, "No more, no more. Look it's all on the floor."

  After another half a day, Su Li Li cried, "Mu Tou, if you still mess around, I will be angry!"

  Mu Tou kept his hands, Su Li Li didn't bother that her whole body was covered with wood shavings, she grabbed a handful of wood bits and threw it straight on his face.

  In a moment, the yard was as if snow was flying in June, the floor flowering with explosions, bits and pieces, laughter all around.

*Ahahahah, this made me laugh a lot.

Comments: I just love the playful bickering between Mu Tou and Su Li Li. If one realises how emotionally painful their past is (both losing their parents due to imperial and political strife), one realises how precious is their youthful laughter. 


  1. Thanks for a good laugh! I'm officially on Mu Tou's boat! I usually ship the man that will get the girl from the start of stories which is why my heart never really gets broken for example Huo Qu Bing- Da Mo Yao, Jing- Lost You Forever and with an exception of Songs in the Clouds where Ling ge ge dies.


    1. Hello 100kisses, Haha thanks for reading and commenting! Oooh, Mu Tou has his first shipper.

      To be honest, I think I was equally on both of their ships but super satisfied with how it ended. I placed the guy who she ends up with in a spoiler at SSB if you want to know. Haha

  2. haha, awh they're so cute when they bicker<33, though I'm still super excited to see her scenes with Qi FengYu~
    At this point, does Su LiLi already know that MuTou knows that she's a girl? Or was this the first time he mentioned it? Cause it seemed she took it pretty well ..?.

    1. Hello karma! The first third probably has more Mu Tou scenes, the second third more Qi Feng Yu scenes, and the last third is an all out battle for Su Li Li. Hahaha.

      Yes! It's kind of taken for granted between the two and Su Li Li actually asks Mu Tou to go her elder sister, because she's 15 and he's 14 when they first met! Hahahaha

    2. Oh wow, they are young. I thought they would be at least 18 or 19 to have this level on interactions and maturity(?).

    3. Oh yes, it's not very realistic actually, but because girls usually marry around 14-16 in ancient china, the ages are usually set younger. But we do get to watch Mu Tou and Li LI grow up :) In that sense, I do think english young adult novels reflect the mental state of youths much better. But, perhaps their maturity can be explained by them both being chased by royal guards and losing their parents to political intrigue at a very young age.

  3. Wait?! Mu Tou doesnt know Li Li is a girl? O_O where does it mentioned?

    I really like this chapter coz they are so obviously flirting with each other.

    Thanks, decembi and I am so glad you are going to translate the important scenes.

    Currently, for me, it's too early to ship either leads - need to wait for more scenes.

    1. Mu Tou suspected Li Li was a girl from the start. Li Li kept making Mu Tou call her big brother but he refused. Hahaha. One day Mu Tou muttered to himself, I knew you were a girl after Li Li was her usual nagging self, and Li Li heard it and realised that Mu Tou knew she was a girl. Ever since then, she makes Mu Tou call her elder sister hahaha!

      Yes! Omg, the flirting <3.

    2. Wait! Is Mu Tou younger than Li Li?

    3. They are either the same age or Mu Tou is one year younger. At the start of the novel, Mu Tou says he is 14 and Li Li says she is 15 so he must call her big brother, but Mu Tou refused (haha). And then a few months later, Li Li turns 15 (this is in the next Scene Translation haha).

  4. Replies
    1. Thanks for reading and commenting :)! I'm really glad there are people who like the Emperor's Strategy!

  5. thank u miss decembi...

    1. Thanks for reading!! :) This will be updated soon