Obviously I want to write this new project (still untitled, lol) over a very long period of time so everything is subject to change. But I have written a bit of the start to get a feel for it, and I thought I would share a scene from near the beginning with you all 🙂
Although I don’t have an overall title, the first chapter (which this scene is from) is currently called “Under A Blood Red Moon”.
After that, I didn’t dare run into anyone else since the sun was lowering with each breath. I focused on weaving through the maze of sloped roofs and glanced up at the sky every so often.
It was when my eyes were glued to the darkening heavens that I smacked into a towering jade wall, and the medicine bag flew out of my hands.
Except, I realised upon opening my eyes, it wasn’t a jade wall at all but a young man wearing jade robes which flowed from his frame. Since I knew everyone from the village, I instantly recognised him as a stranger. But a most curious stranger.
He held himself with the pride of the ancient generals I had seen painted in books, and his every movement held the grace of an immortal. No, he didn’t just seem like an immortal – he was one.
It was the dragon embroidered onto the back of his robes which marked him as from the order of the jade dragon. Of course, I had never met one of these mythical peacekeepers before, so I was only guessing from the stories Papa had told me. But seeing how ethereal he looked, it was hard to believe he was from anywhere but the order of the jade dragon.
Between him being the most handsome man I had ever met – though granted that wasn’t many men since I’d never strayed far from the village – and him being an immortal, my jaw hung open for far longer than it should have. Though it probably shouldn’t have at all. Realising how ridiculous I must have looked, I clamped my mouth shut as quickly as I could. But this only worsened my predicament since my teeth clashed together.
My cheeks warmed. Then, as I remembered I’d walked straight into him and had not yet apologised for it, both my ears and cheeks boiled.
I dared to meet his eyes, if only for a moment. He arched an eyebrow but otherwise, he just held his face like a stern statue. He didn’t look angry, I decided, but he didn’t look too happy either. Seeing how his figure towered over me, I figured it best to apologise. Quickly.
But, of course, my throat decided to close up at that moment. I coughed a few times until it cleared. “Sorry, sorry! I’m so sorry! I didn’t mean to…”
I trailed off as he turned around, not even once blinking at my words. Yet, surprisingly, he did speak as he started away.
“You dropped something.” And that was all he said in that emotionless tone of his.
I stared at the retreating dragon drawn into the back of his jade robes. He was no doubt a statue but more specifically, he was one carved from ice – if his tone was anything to go by.
It took me another moment to realise he’d been referring to Mrs. Liu’s medicine which was in a dirty puddle. I pulled a face at my sour luck and wiped the paper bag on my plain dress, which was nowhere near as majestic as the robes this jade immortal wore.
“Excuse me!” I called after him, realising that I could only refer to him as ‘this jade immortal’. “May I please ask what your name is? I’ve never met an immortal before.”
He continued for several strides without stopping and I thought I would never get to learn his name. But to my surprise, he paused for just a single breath and glanced back over his shoulder. “Li Shao.”
“Li Shao,” I repeated quietly, mostly to myself. “I’m Yulan! I mean, Lu Yulan.”
I groaned, realising how informally I had just introduced myself to this mystical warrior and then groaned for a second time when he continued out of sight, not even once acknowledging my name.
In every moment since I’d walked into him, I’d been so ridiculous. I smacked my forehead. The only saving grace was that I would never meet Li Shao ever again. He’d be long on his way to doing immortal things – like fighting demons and maintaining peace throughout the mortal realm. Then he’d be back to the immortal realm, since as Papa had told me, immortals never stayed in the mortal realm for very long. And when they did, it was good reason.