TN Note: I know nobody really reads the postscripts of books (sometimes I do, sometimes I don’t) but I figured there would be at least 1 person that would like to read or skim it so I figured I’d translate it, and there’s a nice kind of timeline at the end which might help.
Everyone, I’ve finally finished writing.
I find it difficult to describe my mood at this time. It’s not good, not bad, not calm, and not excited.
It’s really hard to describe.
In fact, I’ve been thinking for a long time about how I would feel if I came to this moment. I thought about all kinds of possibilities, but I didn’t think it would be like this—even the most basic words can’t express it well.
I think maybe it’s because I thought too much about this moment that my fantasy exceeded my feelings in reality.
But when I opened the curtains and looked at the gloomy sky in Beijing, I still felt that something had changed.
This was a rally that lasted for five years, five years to the day. It took five years to write nine novels and complete such a huge and complicated story. For an amateur writer, it was really a bit too hard. At the end of my writing, I didn’t know whether the story was good or not, or whether it was exciting or not. I just wanted to let some of the characters in it actually finish their journey. As a matter of fact, this wasn’t under my control. In the end, the biggest dilemma I faced was that the hero was tired of his life and I had to find bait in this story to keep him going.
Just a few minutes ago, not only did I let them finish their journey, but it was a very calm ending.
When I was writing the fourth book, I had already made up my mind to write a long postscript to write out all the doubts and thoughts in my heart during the whole process of writing “The Grave Robbers’ Chronicles”. I must write it immediately while many of the memories are still fresh and all the characters are still alive in my mind.
First, let’s talk about some routine things.
About the origin:
To tell you the truth, I really can’t remember the original intention of writing this novel at that time. But I know that it must not have been a noble and great idea. I’ve never been a person with that kind of writing ideal, and I never wanted to tell others what kind of business I was in. What I’ve been pursuing since I was a child is, to put it bluntly, a sense of recognition, and telling stories is exactly the way I can get a sense of recognition more easily. So, although I can’t remember, I can almost certainly say that when I wrote the first three thousand words, it was just to win some applause.
This was a very, very low pursuit. I was ashamed to talk about it a long time ago because it was so worldly, and although I knew that even if I wasn’t a great man, I could at least do something for the happiness of many people. I became nervous because I didn’t have their noble slogans and I felt that my motivation wasn’t pure.
“The Grave Robbers’ Chronicles” originated from a folktale that my grandmother told me. I was very impressed by this story when I was a child.
The story was about a landlord who bought an empty house. He wanted to plant some flowers and plants in the backyard, but he found that no matter what he planted, it couldn’t survive. So, he went to ask a feng shui master. The feng shui master said that there seemed to be a problem under the yard, so the landlord hired a long-term worker to start digging the yard up. When he dug halfway, he began to see blood, but he didn’t know whether it was really blood or just red mud. At last, a large carved coffin was dug up from under the courtyard, but they didn’t know whose it was.
They put the coffin in the ancestral temple, but the village had been troubled ever since. Not only did things in the field not grow, but even the landlord’s family was dying. All sorts of strange things happened to the surrounding neighbors, so they had to continue looking for a feng shui master. After seeing this, the feng shui master told them to continue digging in the courtyard. After digging for more than ten meters, they dug out a smaller coffin.
It turned out that this was a couple’s grave. The couple loved each other very much, but because the wife’s coffin was sinking so severely, the two coffins were getting farther and farther apart in the ground, and the resentment became heavier.
The village chief found a new place with good feng shui, laid a stone slab under the ground, put the two coffins down, and buried them together again. It was only at that time that everything calmed down.
I developed more associations with this story and used the elements in it to write the first chapter of “The Grave Robbers’ Chronicles”.
I remember the first chapter of the story had more than three thousand words and I wrote it in less than half an hour without any modifications. I posted it where everyone could see it and then wrapped my head in my collar and hid my perked-up ears, hoping to hear some cheers to satisfy my vanity.
This was five years ago. Five years in which I experienced changes that I couldn’t have imagined before. Now, when I look back at the pursuit that I thought was very low, I find that at present, it’s become the noblest slogan.
Stephen King once said in the preface of “The Dark Tower”: I wrote this book and made a lot of money, but the initial happiness of writing this book had nothing to do with money. Five years later, I have become a so-called best-selling writer, but I’m very glad that I’m most happy when I hear some cheers in that humble place on the Internet. I look forward to that moment even more when I finish writing.
About this novel:
In fact, what I want to say is that when I wrote the second book, I already had a strong feeling that it was no longer a novel. I always felt like there was a world that had already been formed elsewhere, but because I started typing on the keyboard, the world grew up and developed slowly, and the people inside began to have their own souls.
When I was thirteen years old, I read Alexandre Dumas’ biography, which said: “All the characters are alive.” When Dumas was writing the third part of “The Three Musketeers”, one of the characters in it died and he cried while writing, which caused all the manuscript paper to be wet with tears. I found it very strange at that time and wondered, what kind of state does the author have to be in to write about the death of his characters in this way?
I tried to stretch my imagination, but it was useless until I started to write this novel and began to consciously endow the characters with different personalities and different life experiences. I slowly found that the plot of the story began to show some changes that I couldn’t predict myself, and soon, I couldn’t control what this person should say or do. I found it to be a very interesting phenomenon. As long as we set up a scene, such as heavy rain, and put these characters into this scene, they would go to their respective positions and do what they should do.
I couldn’t swap the positions of any two of them, because that would give rise to an irreconcilable sense of discord. Even if I forcibly changed the behavior of two of them, I would continue to explain to them in the future plot. And their language was even more so. For example, say I put them at the scene of a tea party. Who would speak first, who would speak later, who would enliven the atmosphere, who would hit the nail on the head, and who would wander away from home… everything had already been decided.
I didn’t need to think about anything. I just needed to look at them to know the direction of the story.
They’re really alive.
In the long process of writing, I changed from a writer to an onlooker. From God’s perspective, I observed everyone’s every move, and slowly, I could even see the origin of many of their slight emotions and behaviors, which came from some of their childhood experiences. For example, I can really see all of Fatty’s past, his pain, his vicissitudes, and everything about him through his actions when he flicks off the ashes from his cigarette.
One flower, one world, one tree, is just like that. I can continuously reverse and repeat a scene, observe it from any angle, and even see the psychological activities of all the people on the scene. The emotions of several people also pass through my heart at the same time.
I think few people can appreciate this kind of pleasure. When I was writing about “making a scene at the Crescent Hotel”, it was as if I was on the balcony and could walk from upstairs to downstairs and watch the people around me in the chaos. Amid the flying debris and fighting crowd, I could stop everything at any time, reverse the whole scene at any time, stick to the characters’ hearts at any time, and experience all the emotional changes in their hearts. I could slowly push everything in front of me forward at a slow speed of one frame per second, then squat down on the ground and watch the expressions of the characters inside slowly change.
The whole world in this book, including every detail, is real to me and can’t be changed. What I’ve built is as solid as reality. Although I’m said to be the creator of this novel, when everything is on track, I begin to have great respect for the world in this novel.
About the story in the novel:
The earliest thing that happened was at the Changsha Dart Summit.
In the early days of the founding of the People’s Republic of China, several grave robbers stole the most important object in this book—the silk book of the Warring States Period—from an ancient tomb. This was the story of Wu Xie’s grandpa’s generation, of Old Dog Wu when he was young. At that time, there were no rankings in the circle but the most famous ones were nine people— Chen Pi Ah Si, Old Dog Wu, Black Back the Sixth, and so on. The last one was Xie Jiuye, Xie Lianhuan’s father. There were also the so-called “Master Ten” and “Master Eleven” behind them, but the scope of recognition was very small. They were all blocked by themselves or their subordinates, and when it came to outsiders, no one knew.
Some people said that Chen Pi Ah Si was now more than ninety years old, and he was more than forty years old fifty years ago. At that time, Old Dog Wu wasn’t very old. If he was seventeen at that time and it took him ten years to become famous, then he would’ve been twenty-seven by then. How could he be ranked behind Chen Pi Ah Si, who was nearly fifty years old, and become Old Dog Wu? If this line went on like this, wouldn’t little Xie Jiu still be wearing open-crotch pants?(1)
It was a bit unreasonable, but those who had some common sense would know that the rankings in the circle weren’t based on age, but on skills and seniority, which were all ranked by others. Old Dog Wu was high in rank, which showed how powerful his wrists and drive were at that time. They made people incapable of refusing to obey him.
The second story also happened at Dart Summit.
That was the incident in which Wu Xie’s Uncle Three encountered the blood corpse in the tomb he entered when thwarting the American, Qiu Dekao, twenty to thirty years after the first story. It could be argued that this incident was entirely coincidental, but Wu Xie’s Uncle Three learned what had happened when Wu Xie’s grandpa and his family encountered the blood corpse before. This time around, Uncle Three gained some experience and got a strange pill. Although this was only an episode, it can be argued that this incident was the cause of the Xisha incident.(2)
The third story takes place off the coast of Xisha.
This was also the story of Wu Xie’s Uncle Three’s adventure at sea. The appearance of Zhang Qiling forms the biggest mystery in this story. There are two versions of the story: one was the deceptive version given by Uncle Three, and the other was the candid version Uncle Three gave after experiencing that catastrophe. The final truth was that both versions were lies because for Uncle Three, there was a huge secret that was related to Wu Xie.
The fourth story takes place in the Seven Star Lu Palace in Shandong.
This was the first story of this work, and it was also the first time Wu Xie went to a tomb. After this, Wu Xie had changed from a staunch atheist to a neurotic, and his participation in such criminal activities was really curious. In this story, Wu Xie and others finally escape by using Poker-Face to turn the tide.
As a result, the previous three stories were organically integrated into this story. Several clues such as the silk manuscript from the Warring States Period, the Xisha underwater tomb incident, and the immortality pills were all gathered together and the whole story began to become extremely complicated.
The fifth story goes back to Xisha.
This time, Wu Xie himself entered Wang Zanghai’s undersea tomb, looking for Uncle Three who had disappeared. At this time, Uncle Three had already gotten clues from the bottom of the sea and started the Heavenly Palace on the Clouds project while Wu Xie and the others, like fools, entered the ancient tomb at the bottom of the sea. This was a game Wang Zanghai had set up a thousand years ago, and in the end, Fatty Wang’s unconventional thinking enabled Wu Xie and the others to survive yet again. In this story, the three forces in this work finally come together and the mystery begins to develop. Wu Xie and the others who are pursuing the truth, Uncle Three who has his own plans, and the unrelenting overseas forces from the previous stories all come face-to-face for the first time here. In the two main lines, the story follows the script written by Wang Zanghai a thousand years ago, while the other is temporarily interrupted.
The sixth story is the Qinling Mountain Sacred Tree.
This is a story that’s been criticized the most—editors think it’s the best and most literary work while readers think they don’t know the so-called story. This story had little to do with the main plot, as it only leads to the huge bronze monument at the foot of the mountain. But at the same time, it also improves the protagonist’s ability. In this story, Wu Xie independently led his mischievous childhood friend to the depths of the Qinling Mountains. For Wu Xie, this story is sometimes like a long dream that feels unreal.
The seventh story takes place in Changbai Mountain, at the eternal Heavenly Palace on the Clouds.
This is the most difficult expedition and the most painful one written by Wu Xie. Everyone embarked on the road of death with their own mysteries. The snow covered the sky and their trek in the narrow snowfield was painful. There, Wu Xie and the others find the ultimate secret that Wang Zanghai tried to leave behind one thousand years ago, but the secret came to an abrupt end in front of the huge underground bronze door. Zhang Qiling, who entered the giant underground door, seemed to be the only one closest to the secret. Wang Zanghai’s main plotline stops here while Tie Mian Sheng’s main plotline resumes.(3)
The eighth story was the Snake Marsh Ghost City.
There are two stories spliced together by clues that run throughout the whole Snake Marsh Ghost City story.
The first is the legend of Wang Zanghai. After Wu Xie sorted it out, he found that it made for an excellent novel theme, and if written in Gulong’s style, it must be a wonderful book. As such, Wu Xie had to write it out in his lifetime.
The second is Tie Mian Sheng’s story, which was slowly beginning to take shape.
Now you can clearly see the origin of the story—the huge bronze miracle in the mountains and the secret behind the Snake Marsh Ghost City. Throughout history, there were two people who transcended the times and got a glimpse of this secret: one was Tie Mian Sheng in the Warring States period, and the other was Wang Zanghai in the early Ming Dynasty. Based on the available data, Wu Xie and the others didn’t know whether there was a direct connection between them, but they could see that Tie Mian Sheng should’ve had more abundant data. After all, his era was very close to the era in which the myth took place. Based on the pills in their graves, the two should’ve had something in common. At the very least, both of them passed down their experiences in some way—silk manuscripts of the Warring States Period and snake-eyebrow copper fish. Wu Xie and the others were pursuing these two clues and gradually unveiled this confusing and mysterious veil.
With regards to Wang Zanghai, the Lu Palace, Golmud, and the Heavenly Palace, they were all part of another system that had very close relations with the Zhang family’s ancient tomb and the Zhang family’s ancestors. For example, Chen Pi Ah Si’s story of hanging upside down from the inverted mirrors and beating the Miao people in the palace was a collection of words.
About dragging out the manuscript:
As a writer, the greatest external pain must be the contradiction between the pressure of the publishing cycle and the quality of your writing, especially when you’re already very familiar with the matter of rushing to draft a manuscript. You know it’s irreconcilable, but as long as you face this kind of pain long enough, you’ll find that it isn’t something unbearable. What’s really hard to bear is that after you’ve endured these pains, you’ll have to endure more incomprehension.
But like always, I still drag the manuscript out.
I’m a slow hand, especially in the later stages. My writing speed becomes slower and slower, but it’s not because I don’t write. It’s because the longer the later parts of the story become, the more information is needed up front. As a result, there’s more you need to worry about. After you write five books, the basic clues and puzzles that were written about before will become a mountain pressing down on you, leaving you helpless. You’ll find that every step you take now is extremely difficult.
In this case, most of the time, I can only choose a steady writing speed. But because of my slow writing, I became infamous. These insults accumulated book by book, slowly drowned out the cheers I could hear before, and slowly became the mainstream.
I can’t say that my heart has always been calm in the face of these words since anyone who faces so much criticism in the early days will doubt his own value.
“So many people don’t like me.” I’m sure you can imagine the frustration in my heart at that time as countless insults such as “The writer has lost his talent” and “irresponsible” were flying around everywhere.
I only write for those who like me. I wanted to drop a sentence like that, but I couldn’t do it. Slowly, anxiety about this information began to encroach upon everything. That year, I don’t know what method I used to slowly calm my heart, but I would like to thank my friends, one of whom had long been famous and experienced all of this before. She told me that writing was meditation, a process of gazing into the heart. All that I was worried about losing didn’t exist for the former me.
Therefore, what I lost was only what I shouldn’t have. I didn’t lose everything I had before I started writing. It was just like a child who picked ten apples from an apple tree and found that three of them were rotten. He shouldn’t be discouraged by losing three apples but should focus on the fact that the other seven are intact.
Language has some power, and I have slowly come to understand this truth myself: emotion is an unquantifiable thing. Sadness is sadness, and happiness is happiness. I write in order to find my initial happiness, because if I lose my heart because of a small loss, then it’s not worth it.
Although the helplessness and persistence in my heart played a role in delaying the draft, I still want to apologize to all my readers here. Five years of waiting almost seem like a small reincarnation cycle. I apologize for all the pain you’ve suffered while waiting. At the same time, I also hope that in the five years of waiting, this novel became a kind of fond memory. Five years isn’t a long or short period of time. If there is a fat man who can make so many people struggle for five years of their precious lives, then he can be regarded as fulfilling his accomplishments. So even if it’s painful, I’ll still secretly rejoice while apologizing.
Why do I like stories?
Let’s talk about my life first. I was born at midnight in a small town in Zhejiang on February 20, 1982. When I was born, neither the sky, the earth, nor the sea responded.
Sometimes when I think about it, I blame God a little bit, because if there was thunder in the sky when I was born, I could have reason to think that I must be different from others. Unfortunately, I can’t go back. I can only live as a real ordinary person in this world.
My family background is quite complicated. My grandmother is from Taixing, Jiangsu, and my publisher is from the same hometown. My grandmother is a boatwoman. In other words, she has no property besides a small wooden boat. My grandfather died when my father was five years old. My father has an older brother and an older sister. I don’t know why my grandfather died—nor does my father—but I vaguely know that my grandmother should be regarded as my grandfather’s child bride.
Grandma actually had a lot of children, but they couldn’t support them at that time. My father was the youngest, so she was very fond of him. Due to famine in the 1960s, my grandmother’s boat set out from Taixing to Shanghai but her ship sank on the Huangpu River due to a collision with a large ship.
My grandmother and her three children wept bitterly when they came ashore because the home they had lived in was gone. Now that they had come to land and looked at the vast beach, all she could feel was fear.
Thanks to the party(4) and the people, my grandmother was eventually resettled. In my father’s memory, there was a particularly peaceful and beautiful memory of old Shanghai. I’ve determined that if my father hadn’t landed at that time, he might not have gone to school and there wouldn’t have been anything after.
I don’t know why, but my father left Shanghai and moved to Zhejiang province near Shanghai. After the “Cultural Revolution” began, my father followed the railway troops into the Greater Hinggan Mountains and spent his most precious youth in the Construction Corps. My mother was also one of the young people who went from the south to the north to support the border. She was a very beautiful sixteen-year-old at that time, and together with three other southern girls, she was called one of the Four Golden Flowers of Daxing’an Mountain. She was chased by my father, who pursued her with specially supplied white rice.
At that time, they should have been quite the glorious couple. In the Construction Corps, people were divided into factions by region. Ningbo, Wenzhou, and Lishui all had their own small groups, and many conflicts continued during this time. My father had been able to fight since he was a child, so he didn’t hesitate to fight. My mother said that there were almost no scars on my father’s body at that time. Because of his ability to fight and his loyalty, my father had prestige among all of the groups. As long as there was a fight, when my father showed up, everyone was afraid to say a word. Once, after returning to the south, my father took a boat full of watermelons and encountered rebels who were robbing people. My father beat dozens of them into the water with a pole from the boat. Although he was outnumbered and had to abandon the watermelons in the end, I feel satisfied when I remember his glory at that time. In addition, my mother was amazingly beautiful. The two of them were quite envied at that time.
Speaking of my mother, her family is more interesting.
My grandmother is the kiln owner of a place called Qianyao(5) in our hometown. There were a thousand kilns in Qianyao, which was the core production area of bricks and tiles at that time. My grandmother owned a large kiln in the local area, which belonged to a very important class. My grandfather escaped from the Kuomintang soldiers and snuck all the way through the mountains to my hometown, where he worked as a short-term laborer in the landlord’s house. It wasn’t until after the founding of the People’s Republic that they were introduced to each other and became a couple.
There must be thousands of stories about my grandparents. At that time, my grandfather was born with divine power. A big man standing at a height of 1.86 meters (~6 ft), he was like a giant compared to others in society at that time. My grandmother said that she married him because she saw him lift something that only three people could lift together. Of course, it seemed like there were many interludes to this marriage. When my grandfather died, I vaguely heard my grandmother sadly telling my mother in the mourning hall about my grandfather’s previous love affair.
I had seen the photos of my parents in those days. My father was so handsome that you couldn’t look directly at him while my mother looked like a lotus flower. They were so beautiful and outstanding that every time I look in the mirror, I think of how unfair the world is. So many good genes, but when it came to me, they unexpectedly didn’t get passed down.
My parents established a relationship in Daxing’an Mountain, then transferred to Daqing oil field, and then returned to the south. My father was a deputy food manager in the supply and marketing system at that time. He was in charge of materials, so my family was fairly well off. After that, on a night with no special features, I was born.
Up to this point, many people will find it interesting while some people will feel bored. What is this all about? Is there a reason to mention all these things?
In fact, it’s all very meaningful. I want to tell you that my paternal grandmother, my maternal grandparents, and my father and mother are all very good storytellers. When I was born as the first child of two families, how did I spend my childhood when there was no TV, no movies, no internet, and no novels?
I grew up under the care of a circle of storytellers. Folktales, war stories, fairy tales… my childhood was full of these. Some stories now sound very appealing, and many of them have been directly used in “The Grave Robbers’ Chronicles”.
At that time, I was already certain that all the initial fun can only come from stories. This is also the most basic reason why I became fascinated with stories later on because I can fully enjoy the fun that a story can convey.
After that, my life can be described as “boring”. It failed in all aspects, and in today’s words, can even be called useless. Some people say that when a person is born, God will always give him some special skills so that he can help others. For a long time, however, I really felt that I had no special skills.
In my circle of friends, there are always such phenomena: students with good grades are generally not very good at sports; students good at sports generally don’t have good grades; students with good grades and who are good at sports are generally ugly; students who have good grades, are good at sports, and aren’t ugly usually fall in love early and are expelled; students who have good grades, are good at sports, aren’t ugly, and don’t fall in love early become gay.(6)
What am I trying to say?
What I want to say is that I have nothing to do with the above, which is the sorrow of this society. No one has ever cared about a child who is bad at sports, has bad grades, is ugly, and skips classes all the time.
Most of the time when I dream at midnight, I think that God is really unfair. Everyone around me has a legendary life, so why is my life like this?
At that time, I wasn’t in good health. Since I fainted in the examination room during a test in elementary school, the teacher focused on me every time and would place me in a well-ventilated place with an appropriate temperature setting. This place must have been a good feng shui spot because the teacher proctoring the exam would rest there except for when he was making his rounds. He often asked me about my physical condition for fear that I would die in the exam room, so I couldn’t cheat. But travel, sports, and the like were already predetermined when it came to me. I was born with a pair of fishermen’s feet—my toes are long with the big toes being the longest. They are especially useful when swimming lazily, but they are completely useless when explosive force is needed. In addition, as long as the sun was a little higher in the sky, it was easy to suddenly fall to the ground and froth at the mouth. The PE teacher took good care of me as if I was the principal’s son. As a result, most of my PE classes were spent in the shade of some trees, wearing a white shirt and holding a novel in my hand.
For me, this early life was quite pleasant. Apart from being hit in the head by a soccer ball kicked by a handsome guy on the field and rolling down the stairs, I still especially liked those quiet days when I didn’t sweat and could read instead.
I think many people have similar experiences like this, but not necessarily as absolute as mine. At that time, I was reading novels almost all the time. After emptying the library, I turned to a small private bookstore and started reading the first book on the shelf. I spent my money borrowing all the books, but soon, the money wasn’t enough. For me, who had no special skills, it was impossible to earn living expenses. I started reading the books in the store, but I usually read three and borrowed one. The boss was embarrassed to drive me away because I was a big customer in the beginning. Although I borrowed less later, the frequency was high, and the total amount was good. I think my emotional intelligence was developed at this time.
By the end of junior high, I had no more books to read, so I began to write some things myself. Although the quality wasn’t very good, after finishing a round of regular novel reading, I suddenly had a strong desire—I want to write a novel myself. The idea at that time had nothing to do with any dreams I had. I didn’t want to be a writer at all. At that time, I just felt that writing a good story would be cool. That way, everyone would look at me.
That year, I began to really write. From the initial scribbles, to analyzing the works of famous artists, to studying abbreviations, re-writing outlines, looking for suspense setting skills, and finding the basic rhythm of novels, it only took me two months before I slowly found that the novels I had written were becoming more and more interesting.
But I still didn’t dare submit any articles. My useless life made it difficult for me to encourage myself to take this step. There weren’t any computers at that time, so I used pen and paper to draft my manuscripts. I slowly began to indulge myself and abandoned my studies (I didn’t achieve much anyway). By the time I graduated from college, the total number of words I wrote exceeded twenty million, most of which were written on various abandoned exercise books(7). I’m the type of person who changed exercise books very frequently because mine usually had homework in the front and the novels I wrote in the back. This made it convenient for me to write during class. I could fill in one notebook in two or three classes, but I had to change to a new one for my homework the next day.
To be honest, looking back at what I’ve written now, some of my works are still at a level that astonishes me. Not only can they be compared with what I’ve written now, but many of them are even better because I paid attention to writing and sentence structure at that time. But now I’m already a wily old man. Knowing that it’s enough to express my meaning clearly, I’m often too lazy to think about the words.
Throughout the whole writing process, I found that I have a particularly obvious feature, which is that I only write stories.
At that time, there were many kinds of stories I wrote, including martial arts, thrillers, and romance. I even started to write some popular types, such as transmigration novels, but unlike other literary lovers, I only want to write stories. The sentence I want to hear most is: “What about the rest, will you write it later?” Because this is the best evaluation my story can receive.
After the publication of “The Grave Robbers’ Chronicles”, many people asked me a question: Do you think your success is due to luck?
I would like to say that there is no success without luck. Some good luck is always good, although what one needs most isn’t luck. There are many times where we also know that luck can’t help you too much. Even if you win the lottery, if you don’t have the ability to handle huge sums of money, the money in your hand will soon become a big problem.
What people need is the ability to seize opportunities. The moment I decided to write “The Grave Robbers’ Chronicles”, I took a kind of carefree attitude. This indifference attracted many people to check it out, and it’s all attributed to those twenty million words.
So, if I really want to say where my luck is, I think it comes from not being smart, not getting good grades, and not playing or being good at sports. God prefers the ugly ones.
Today, I accept everything very calmly. It has nothing to do with luck and talent, I’ve just been led by the story. What I want to say is that if a person really likes eating and has been deeply involved in eating since childhood, then he will be successful when he’s thirty years old. If a person has liked fighting from the time he was a child up until he’s thirty years old, then he can also succeed.
If you like a thing and stick to it, you can always succeed.
I said some conventional remarks, which are probably what should be written in a postscript. Now, let’s say the things I really want to say. To turn this page, one must be psychologically prepared.
Wu Xie is a difficult person to describe. If I have to say it, I want to say: he is actually an ordinary person.
But this doesn’t mean that he isn’t great. It’s because he’s an ordinary person that people admire him so much for all he has experienced.
I think many friends will hate his weakness and hesitation when they first see him, but as the story progresses step by step, more and more people like him. He is a boy as weak as water, but please don’t forget that in harsh winter, the most formless water will become solid ice.
Wu Xie is a person like that. He is simple, a little clever, cowardly, and someone who cherishes his life. He’s sensitive and afraid of hurting people around him and is the least suitable person to experience danger among all those on the team.
But I let him become the protagonist of the story and let him experience the most terrifying journey, which is probably the most special part of the story. When everyone can back down, he just can’t; when everyone can escape, he can’t.
I really want to say sorry to him for pushing this ordinary person into such a complicated puzzle. When I look at his entanglements and troubles, it’s like I see my own entanglements and troubles. For a period of time, I could even deeply feel the despair in his heart for everything he had gone through. At that time, I wanted to know what he would do when faced with such complicated despair.
I didn’t expect him to survive. In the development of the story, everyone could see how an ordinary person struggled to become a person he didn’t want to be. But the thing that made everyone like him was that he maintained his conscience in all the places that could be turning points in his life. Even though he eventually wore a sinister mask, he was still Wu Xie at heart. He could have a lot of petty crimes and petty vices under his belt, as well as a lot of minor moral problems, but when it came to making the biggest choice, he would always be the Wu Xie who wished everyone well.
“I hope all of us can live well along the way, and all of us can see our own ending. We may not live long, please let us live the life we deserve.”
Wu Xie prayed to the sky when Pan Zi was dying, even though he was in a dark cave. He took all the responsibility and blame upon himself, unable to face the meaning of his journey.
This is Wu Xie, the “useless” one in the team and the most useless leader in the Iron Triangle. He needs other people’s protection and help. He has boundless curiosity and desire, but as long as a person is hurt, his own things aren’t important. He’s an ordinary person who wishes you to live no matter how much he hates you. This is because he doesn’t understand killing or the wealth that transcends life, he only understands the value of the word “alive”.
This is a man as powerful as a deity. With him in the space, I can always write very easily, because as long as he is around, I can block all disasters and suffering for you.
He has no words, no happiness, and no grief. He’s always like a porcelain doll, just standing there silently while looking at everything indifferently. But you know that he cares about you, and no one can ever bring you as much of a sense of security as he does.
I don’t know why, but when I write about this man’s various actions, my heart is always suffused with a deep sadness.
As he himself said, he is a man without a past and a future. His only connection with the world seems to be of little value. He doesn’t know where he came from or where he’s going, he only knows that he has one thing he must do in this world.
“Can you imagine? One day you suddenly wake up in a cave and look around without knowing anything, but you already have a responsibility that you must shoulder. You have no right to see the scenery along the way, and you can’t enjoy your friends and lovers. The moment you regain consciousness, all the beautiful things in your life have no meaning to you.”
Zhang Qiling is carrying his own destiny in silence. What saddens me the most is that he just carries it indifferently, as if it’s a trivial matter that’s taken for granted. If you ask him, he’ll only silently shake his head and say to you, “It’s fine.”
This is the man I wrote. He bears the most painful fate in the world, even a thousand times more painful than death. But he is neither angry nor sad, nor evasive or full of suffering. He’s right there, telling everyone he protects that it’s fine.
At the end of Volume 8 of “The Grave Robbers’ Chronicles”, I let him sleep again, and only after ten years will I have the chance to wake him up again.
This may not be a good ending for everyone, but for him, I really can’t think of a better one.
Fatty is a person who is coarse and fine, but on the whole, I think he’s a fine man. Even in many aspects, he’s more fine than Wu Xie. Fatty gives people the impression that he’s always joking and always getting into trouble. He has his own bad habits, but I still think he’s the most normal out of the three of them.
In other words, if you had to choose someone to be your husband, only Fatty can do it.
If Wu Xie is the kind of person who avoids pain and Little Brother is the kind who ignores it, Fatty is the only one who can resolve it.
Of these people, Fatty undoubtedly suffered the most. This so-called endurance means that Fatty can feel the pain from getting hurt, but instead of suffering through it endlessly like Little Brother, he just nods at it in greeting.
A person who can understand and bear so much pain and dissolve it bit by bit to truly be happy from the depths of their heart can almost be called a Buddha.
Yes, Fatty is the Buddha who sees through everything. To some extent, there is more to his jokes than he originally lets on. When he patted the innocent shoulder and said the sentence “Naïve Wu Xie”, he already saw through Wu Xie clearly. And his nodding to Little Brother in tacit understanding to outflank any danger shows that he also fully understands Little Brother’s empty heart.
But in the end, Fatty ultimately couldn’t bear it. After Yun Cai died, could his strong heart still resolve the intense grief? Upon finding that his heart was unwilling to heal and that he didn’t want this pain to be the same as before, he finally became an empty shell.
Fatty chose to keep this pain with him forever. My tears couldn’t stop flowing as I wrote a crying Fatty holding Yun Cai’s corpse and saying to Wu Xie, “I really liked her. I never joked about that.” I regret that I didn’t write more space for him and Yun Cai earlier so that he could have more memories with her.
For Fatty, his love is simple: like is like. You don’t have to have so many reasons; there’s no need to get along so much.
The Iron Triangle:
I don’t know how to explain what their relationship is. Are they friends? I think that they’ve gone beyond being friends. They had their own goals, but they all gave those up in the end so are they relatives? I don’t think so either. They are estranged from each other and question each other, but this estrangement was a kind of silent protection. Everything seemed to be based on the most basic feelings: I hope you can be safe, whether it’s Wu Xie pursuing Poker-Face and trying to persuade him, or Fatty not seeking money when helping Wu Xie take risks, or even Poker-Face’s repeated rescue of the two and putting himself in danger.
“These are my friends. Please go away and tell your boss that if my friends suffer any harm, I will definitely kill him. Even if he runs to the ends of the earth, I can find him. I have plenty of time, anyways.” Poker-Face quietly said these words, with a bewildered Fatty and Wu Xie standing behind him.
“Let me tell you, even if he wants to destroy all my business in the future, I won’t be upset. This is the Wu family’s business; I won’t let it fall into just anybody’s hands. I’m not here today to ask you to agree to this matter, I’m here to warn you. Anyone who dares to say another word of nonsense to Master Zhang will be like this!” Wu Xie smashed through the desk with his unclenched fist. At that moment, his anger prevented him from feeling the severe pain when his fingers were broken.
“This Fat Master will stay here. There are only two people who can get me to leave here: one is Mr. Naïve and the other is Little Brother. You must live well and not do anything to bother me. You know I’m getting old. Of course, it’s also a beautiful thing for us to die together in a fight. If one day you really feel that there’s a place you have to go to and you run into trouble, you must call me so I don’t have any regrets in this life.”
This is the iron triangle.
“The Grave Robbers’ Chronicles” Timeline
In the early 1950s— the Wu family encountered a blood corpse when robbing a tomb.
1952— Qiu Dekao went back to the United States, the Mystic Nine declined.
1956— Archaeological team worked at the Zhangjiapu site in Shangsi, Guangxi.
1963-1965— Led by Zhang Da Fo Ye, the Mystic Nine participated in the largest grave robbery in history.
1970—The translation organization, thanks to gold-toothed Jin Wantang, completed the research on the Zhang family’s ancient building.
1974—Chen Pi Ah Si went to the mirror palace at Reclining Buddha Ridge; Qiu Dekao unraveled the mystery of the Warring States Period silk books and organized the first exploration of the dragon veins(8).
1976—The original archaeological team to Banai was actually a funeral procession.
1977—Wu Xie was born.
Around 1978—The original archaeological team was replaced.
After 1979—Xie Jiuye’s team had no choice but to turn to Wu Xie’s grandpa in Hangzhou, who made a crafty escape plan and hid the corpse in the Southern Song Dynasty’s imperial tomb.
Around 1982—Wu Sanxing got ahead of Qiu Dekao’s team and single-handedly explored the tomb of the blood corpse.
Around 1985—The archaeological team entered the Xisha undersea tomb and was imprisoned in a sanatorium. Xie Lianhuan and Wu Sanxing joined forces for the first time.
1990—An organization sealed the archaeological data related to Banai and removed their surveillance on the sanatorium. Wen-Jin and her group were still using the sanatorium as their base and continued their research while establishing avideotape mechanism.
1993— Wen-Jin and the others discovered the Changbai Mountain clue and decided to go there after studying the data brought out from the undersea tomb.
June 18, 1993—While exploring Changbai Mountain’s Heavenly Palace in the Clouds, Wen-Jin saw the Ultimate.
1995—Wen-Jin and her group found the legendary territory of the Queen of the West. After the trip to Tamu-Tuo, Huo Ling’s body began to change.
From 1995 to 1999— Granny Huo received mysterious video tapes.
Around 2000—Little Brother returned to Banai, Guangxi, only to have a sudden bout of amnesia. He was put into a tomb as bait to catch zombies and was then rescued by Chen Pi Ah Si.
February 1, 2003— Jin Wantang brought Wu Xie the silk manuscript from the Warring States Period and Wu Xie’s grave-robbing adventure began.
February 2003— Seven Star Lu Palace
March 2003—Xisha Undersea Tomb
Autumn 2003—Qinling Sacred Tree
Winter 2003—Heavenly Palace in the Clouds
May 2004—Snake Marsh Ghost City
August 2004—Ancient Building under the Dark Mountain
Month A in 2004—the Iron Triangle wreaked havoc at the Crescent Hotel.
Month B in 2004—Stone Shadow in Qiong Cave
Month C in 2004— Wu Xie and Fatty went deep into the Zhang family’s ancient building and rescued Poker-face.
Month D in 2004—Wu Xie found the basement under Uncle Three’s house and then received a letter.
Beginning of autumn, 2005—Poke-face traveled thousands of miles to Hangzhou to say goodbye to Wu Xie and then went to Changbai Mountain again.
2015— Ten years later…
Update: Nan Pai San Shu has filled in the pit and said the important things three times. Poker-face came out of the bronze door. Please continue to read “The Grave Robbers’ Chronicles: Ten Years Later”.
<Chapter 81> <Table of Contents><2009 Chinese New Year Special: Extra 1.1>
(1) Si=4, Wu=5, Jiu=9, he’s basically talking about their seniority I think. Also, apparently open-crotch pants are worn by toddlers in China before they do toilet training, which I find super weird but whatev
(2) It’s the first chapter in Cavern of Blood Zombies and Uncle Three’s story in chapters 2-4 of Deadly Desert Winds
(3) Tie Mian Sheng is from Book 1 Cavern of Zombies, he’s that Iron-masked scholar Wu Xie reads about in the scroll they found in that tomb that came out of the tree—referred to as Mr. Iron-face in the book if that helps.
(4) Think he means the Communist Party/government
(5) Thousand kilns
(6) lol wtf is up with that logic? I’m sure you all know the stigma against gays in China so don’t take it to heart.
(7) Think along the lines of workbooks or notebooks they write their homework in
(8) Terrain that looks like a dragon
Another TN note: I wasn’t sure what the A, B, C, D bit from 2004 in the timeline meant but that’s how it was in the raw. I’ll start on the 2009 Chinese New Year Special tomorrow (it’s 30 chapters so you know the drill, ~3 chapters a weeknight (or ~20 pages in word)).
There’s been a change of plans after the lovely Taomubiji pointed out that there’s a Vol 9 that takes place right after Vol 8 (don’t know how I missed that lol) so I’ll do that after the new year special. It looks like a beast, so the Tibetan Prequel is gonna be pushed back quite a bit. Sorry to those looking forward to it. Once again, THANK YOU for putting up with my confusion as I try to get this all sorted out lol. And a super thank you for the very kind comments, likes, and emails. They do warm my heart after a shitty day at work 🙂
31 thoughts on “Chapter 82 Postscript”
I really liked his description of Wu Xie, Pangzi and Zhang Qilin because that was my impression of them too. Also of the iron-triangle, they are like a family that you choose. Thank you for translating this as the timeline is slightly less confusing
You work AND you post chapters? *clap clap clap* I have no words *cheering*
I’m the first to admit, I have no life 😂😂😂😂😂😂 And thank you for being so nice!!! 😊
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Thank you for your wonderful work!!
You’re very welcome! 😊 And thanks for reading!
A million thanks for painstakingly translating these novels.
And also, thank you for putting this postscript up. To be honest, I just did a quick scan on this postcript but stopped and read attentively on the part where the author wrote about the characters. And I just cried like a baby after I did 😭
Hahaha totally understandable! I honestly didn’t know they were called the Iron Triangle until I did the postscript (and I really thought the timeline was helpful)
Yea, the timeline is really helpful. Makes me wanna re-read the entire thing again!
I can’t thank you enough for translating all these books and chapters and more.. ❤
It helped me through a shitty time in my life and only this web page managed to distract my broken heart. So thank you again. I've cried a lot while reading, but I think I really needed it. ❤
Since there is nothing I can do for you, even though you've done a lot for me, just know that while I might be crying as I write this (they are tears of relief, joy, and sorrow equally) I am very grateful for your hard work. ❤
All the best to you and take care! 🙂
I’m sorry you’re having a rough time 🥺 but I’m glad DMBJ could help you feel better, even if it’s just a little bit 😘. And at least there’s a lot of content to keep your mind off things. The author definitely doesn’t disappoint there 😂
Hope you stay happy, healthy, and safe!!!! And happy reading!! 😘😘😘
Like you said , I don’t know what I’m feeling after reading all those chapters… I feel abit lonely after the separation… I always hope for happy ending but wu xie’s loneliness and tiredness makes me uneasy and uncomfortable… I don’t want the 3 of them to separate but I respect your decision … Thank you for creating these characters… They really make me happy at times…
I normally don’t read postscripts but i rly wanted to read DB, I read the authors past how he started writing the novel, his passion for reading. The timeline was explained well, I understand some things I couldnt get back then
Especially when he pointed and clarified the all the characters traits, I am already crying coz the story ended, how Xiao ge went to see wu xie so he could properly bid him farewell, how he still went to save him when he fell, their bond is so precious and unique,
Xiao ge is a person who knows all the darkness behind a human heart but he still believes in wu xie and will protect him
I so remember the author’s line from an interview “Your ten years of innocence and purity” the reason he went inside was to protect wu xie purity.
i am missing them already ;-; ;-; ;-;
MereBear thankyou so much, I will say thankyou to u for infinity because of u I read such a masterpiece,
though the ending was sad but i think i understand the author’s thinking and i respect his decision.
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I just wanted to ask the quotes or wordings each of them said from which vol were they from?
They’re not from any of the novels. It’s just kind of what the author imagined them saying I think. I kind of “off script” thing if you will
And here I was thinking did I skip a vol or something, but its still nice he added these lines in the postscript.
Thankyou once again!!!
I will be commenting on the sequels next!!
I need to read more!!
Thank you very much for your hard work! I’m enjoy reading it. ^^”
You’re very welcome!!! 😘
You’re very welcome! 😊
i’ve been a silent reader for a while and i wanna say that i’m gratefull, thank you very much. i had a lot of emotion while reading it. i’m crying over panzi, i’m laughing over their joke, i was tense in the teashop. and i think the author is right, the characters is alive. i’m craving more and more of their story. thank you merebear, i wish you happy and healthy. i’m not good at giving comment but i want you to know that i read and enjoy your work ^^
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Thank you! I really appreciate the kind words! 😘
Thank you for translating even the postscript. It was very interesting to learn more about the author and his thoughts about the story.
Thank you so much for translating every thing until the postscipt. Actually i am heart broken because of the ending but read what the author feels that they are alive and are beyond his control is help to understand why this happend based on their characters.. he is right when he said that it was the best ending for Xiao ge compare to the others thing that may happened to someone that already lost all his purpose (well, even Wu Xie though going wild and misundertood that he is going to kill him self).. and for Wu Xie that already tired and dejected, even though its painful, the 10 years promised will drag him alive. I just can’t imagine how broken fatty is until the author said that he choose to live with the pain all his live.. someone as lively as fatty.. that just sad
I cant see this characters having happy ending like their plan in Reboot drama that they said they will retired, travel and settle in quiet place.. but okay.. bring it on. I already falling on love with this story, so i should commit even to the sadness their bring, as it is not the only thing the story give. Aming other things.. its a beautiful connection and adventure
No one should regret
Merebear……you have left me speechless n mesmerized…..kudos! And here o was thinking how do I read this book when I know zero about the language…u make me want to read it from..the beginning again……thank u 🙂
Thank you soooooo much for translating all of this. When I finished the books with official translations, I was about ready to cry at the thought of having to google translate the remaining books…. until I discovered your site!!!! Daomu has been my night read for the past six months, so your site and translations have been such a huge part of my life this year. Lol I even dreamed about the trees in your website header once. I also super appreciate all the footnotes you have, and always look out for them even when I don’t really need clarification because they’re just so fun to read. Without your hard work and dedication, so many of us unable to read chinese wouldn’t be able to enjoy this incredible world of Wu Xie and co., so I literally cannot express my gratitude enough. Thank you for everythiiiiiiiiing I ❤️ You
You’re very welcome and thank you for reading! 😘 Glad you’ve enjoyed it so far 😊
No words can explain how much thankful I am. Thank you for translating DBMJ ✨❤️🥺
OMG after reading so much other DMBJ stories I had totally forgotten how great this book was. It has everything I wanted and even more (less tons of answers). It made me cry like a baby ( I’m still crying now) it made me sad, scared, entertained, anxious, curious, it gave me a lot of headaches (I’m still trying to understand so many things) it’s jus brilliant!
I think I still have to read the whole bunch again.. i need it. I’m obsessed.
My iron triangle is the love of my life and Wu Xie will forever be my favorite character ever (or must I say man, cause he’s so real to me)
And you are like an angel from heaven for translating..
Thanck you so much for the Translation -> Thancky comming from Germany
I have tears in my eyes. In my opinion Pingxie is real. Who would go 10 Years behind this door for someone who is willing to go? I mean in doesn`t seem like Wu Xie was happy to hear that but i thinck he had done it cause is was his duty and he doesn`t want to suffer his fried/love instead. But cause Pokerface knew that he doesn`t told him first and when he told him he put him to sleep so he had no chance to go. A fuck this is so saaaaaad….
You are really an angel for translating an i am going to read the rest of all those books.
Ah is someone here that also hate the fact that Wu Xie always put the blame on himself and put his own light under a bushel? But also this made ihm such a great character!
P.S I wanted to mention that i always read your notes at the end ❤
Влилась в этот стройный ряд комментаторов, прочитав эпилог. Огромное спасибо за него! Столько нового узнала и почерпнула историй! Сразу захотелось как Нан Пай Сан Шу дописать свой роман. Он сказал правильные вещи, что чем ближе к завершению произведения, тем становится сложнее его закончить. У самой та же самая проблема. Не хочется испортить, слив сюжет, который оброс и наполнил жизни героев. Очень благодарна за его слова и ваш перевод! Спасибо от всего сердца!
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