Fatty immediately lit the fork of the clothesline pole, looking just like a general.(1) The monkeys were startled by the flames, but instead of running away immediately, they began circling around Fatty. One of the monkeys snuck up behind Fatty and scratched him. Fatty didn’t react fast enough to dodge and immediately turned around, but that was a mistake—the monkey who was originally standing in front of him took advantage of his distraction and kicked him in the back, right where his heart was.
The impact caused Fatty to stagger, giving all the monkeys around him the opportunity to rush up and begin kicking and scratching him. At this time, Poker-Face showed his sniping prowess and sent out a flawless shot. A big piece of milk candy slammed into one of the monkey’s heads, and after four more shots, the four strongest monkeys around Fatty had all been beaten back.
The shots must have been really painful and embarrassing, because the monkeys flew into a rage and kept touching the red, swollen bumps on their foreheads. Fatty, on the other hand, wasn’t injured because his makeshift armor protected him. He quickly caught the unluckiest monkey and hit it directly in the crotch.
The monkey immediately lost its will to fight and dropped to the ground, rolling around and clutching its crotch in pain.
Fatty’s morale was immediately boosted and he began to take the initiative to attack. Those monkeys neither ran far nor dared to rush towards him rashly.
At this time, another group of monkeys hiding in the trees began to throw mud and stones at the house, and a window on the third floor was soon broken. Poker-Face turned his attention to the attackers hiding in the trees and began sniping at them.
His aim was very accurate, so even though there were a lot of monkeys, he could strike one down with just one piece of candy. The slingshot couldn’t kill them, but it basically suppressed their long-range support attack after about a minute.
But Fatty, who lost Poker-Face’s sniper support, was once again besieged by the monkeys. As both sides collided, Fatty kept up a simple routine: catch one and hit it directly in the crotch. Soon, there were three monkeys rolling around on the ground.
But he found that this trick didn’t work for all the monkeys, because the rest were basically female.
“You must be doing this for love so I won’t hit you,” Fatty shouted, “but don’t think I’m easy to handle!”
Seeing that both sides were hesitant to attack (which was called a stalemate in the art of war), I immediately hid behind a window and began observing the surrounding situation. The monkey king hadn’t appeared yet, so he was probably hiding in a safe place to command the battle. According to Sun Tzu’s “The Art of War”, a direct method may be used for joining battle, but indirect methods would be needed in order to secure victory.(2) These indirect methods weren’t about having the troops appear suddenly in ambush but having the extra strength that came from reserve troops, which could often determine the war’s victor.
I was our side’s reserve troops. The monkey king wanted to get its revenge against me and must be looking for me, so it hadn’t sent its reserve troops out yet.
When I came to the back door, I saw three or four monkeys hanging on the window. They put their hands on the wire as they tried to open the window, but as a result, they all ended up getting electrocuted. Their fur was standing on end from the electric shock, and after having reached too far inside, it was now impossible for them to escape quickly. I pulled out the plug and watched as they all staggered away.
I put the plug back in, went to the second-floor balcony, and climbed from it to the next-door neighbor’s house. They were watching a movie on their cell phone. When they saw me climbing over with my blowgun, they asked me if I wanted some tea, but I declined.
I then climbed to the neighbor’s roof—it was two stories higher than Ah Ting’s house so the view was very good—lay down, and began to look around. Soon, I found that there was a cell phone tower behind the tree that Poker-Face had pointed to before. The monkey king was hiding at the top of the tower, accompanied by several monkeys. I couldn’t tell whether they were guards or concubines, but they were all howling anxiously.
This monkey was indeed clever.
I went back down to the first floor and approached the cell tower carefully. The tower was very tall, but after eyeing the distance, I figured that I had enough lung capacity to fire off a shot. Instead of blowing nails, however, I would have to use a kind of needle that was used for bird hunting.
But I had only prepared two of these. I stuffed one of them into the blowgun, took aim, and blew.
At this time, a monkey standing next to the monkey king suddenly moved, and the blow dart hit it instead. The monkey jumped up and immediately started scratching the wound.
Finding this behavior odd, the monkey king looked at the grimacing monkey. Then, the monkey suddenly began to lose strength in its hands and feet, and that’s when the monkey king happened to see me.
It immediately let out a howl, and the three remaining guard monkeys jumped down from the cell tower and rushed right towards me. The one I shot fell to the ground after a few steps, but the poison on the needle wasn’t enough to keep it down for long. It immediately got up again and continued running towards me as if it was drunk.
I inserted the second needle and shot down the second monkey. After these two were brought down, I saw that the third one was getting closer so I lit the firecrackers in my hand and threw them at it. For some reason, it caught them instead of dodging, but as a result, it got caught in the small explosion and swiftly fled, completely ignoring the monkey king.
At this time, the monkey king had also descended to the ground and was getting ready to confront me face-to-face. I suddenly heard Fatty’s voice say in my headphones, “They’re going back to defend the monkey king.”
I inserted a nail into my blowgun and blew it directly at the monkey king, but it actually tilted its head back and avoided it.
Its eyes at this time were similar to Poker-Face if he were a monkey or Black Glasses if he were an ape. It looked at me very disdainfully, as if I were foolish for confronting it directly like this.
I inserted another nail and pretended to blow it. The monkey king immediately tilted its head again, but when it did so, I blew the nail for real, and the poisoned nail accurately pierced its neck.
Don’t underestimate the malice of human beings, you evil beast, I said to myself.
The monkey king seemed to be in a state of disbelief, but he quickly pulled out the nail and rushed right towards me. I turned and ran, trying to get within Poker-Face’s firing range. The monkey king swiftly chased after me, but right when it was about to catch me, I dropped to the ground, rolled, swung my blowgun up like a club, and hit it on the head.
It went flying backwards, but by the time it stood up and scratched its head, the poison finally kicked in.
Black Glasses said that most of the fighting skills that humans possessed had been learned from animals. So, logically speaking, humans shouldn’t be able to beat animals. But as long as they had a club in their hands, the whole situation would be completely different.
The most powerful thing about humans wasn’t their ability to use clubs, but their ability to hide them.
I glanced at the group of monkeys rushing back to defend their leader and slowly walked towards the monkey king. Its muscles were lax and it was nearly unconscious. I grabbed the back of its neck and looked at the dozens of monkeys that were slowly approaching now. When the monkeys finally arrived in front of me, they didn’t dare come any closer. Obviously, this scene must have the same feeling as when their ancestors were bitten by tigers.
They probably thought that the monkey king was dead, so I started to beat its ass in front of them. It howled in pain, but it had no strength left after being poisoned and couldn’t resist at all.
In the end, the monkey king’s tail drooped and it showed an extremely miserable countenance. This was the signal that it had lost, so all the monkeys gradually began retreating, and finally disappeared into the woods.
When I carried the monkey king back into the yard, Fatty burst out laughing at the sight. I gave the antidote to the first two monkeys I had taken down. They were only slightly poisoned so they should be fine, but the monkey king had to drink a lot in order to get rid of the poison.
After I made it drink until its belly became distended, the toxicity flared up and took full effect. It was still conscious at this time, but couldn’t move at all. The neighbors came from all around to watch, which I knew was only adding to the tremendous mental damage it had suffered.
After about an hour, the toxicity gradually subsided, and it began to recover. We let it go and watched as it stumbled away.
I was certain that it would no longer be the monkey king after it returned. It would take a long time for it to regain the throne, so it wouldn’t dare to retaliate again.
Actually, it was more likely that it would take a very long time for it to return to its original group because it followed our truck all the way here. It was dark now, so it may not know the way back.
We fought this battle beautifully, but after checking for injuries, I found that I had a scratch on the back of my hand. It was really troublesome because now I would have to get a rabies vaccine. We went directly to the hospital’s emergency room, got vaccinated, and then returned to Ah Ting’s house, where we found that all the neighbors had brought food for a midnight snack.
They must have thought that what happened was really interesting because everyone was very excited.
We drank some beer, ate two blackspot tuskfish,(3) and went back to our room to sleep. Even as I was preparing for bed, I couldn’t stop laughing. As it turned out, fighting really was a good way to relieve stress. When I moved to pull the window curtains closed, I saw Poker-Face in the yard, putting what was left of the White Rabbit candy into the truck. It seemed that he thought it was good, which made me smile.
As soon as I lay down, I immediately felt sleepy. Our next step was to make the return trip home, which had me wondering how my moss was doing even as I was on the brink of sleep. I really missed it.
<Chapter 48><Table of Contents><Chapter 50>
(1) Just to note, the pole probably looks like this (hard to see but there are two little prongs on the end to help you get the laundry down):
(2) Took that straight from Chapter 5 of the free version on google books. “The Art of War” is an ancient Chinese military treatise dating from the Late Spring and Autumn Period (roughly 5th century BC). The work was attributed to the ancient Chinese military strategist Sun Tzu and is composed of 13 chapters. Each one is devoted to a different set of skills or art related to warfare and how it applies to military strategy and tactics. It remains the most influential strategy text in East Asian warfare and has influenced both Far Eastern and Western military thinking, business tactics, legal strategy, politics, sports, lifestyles, etc.
(3) The blackspot tuskfish is a wrasse native to the Indian Ocean and the western Pacific Ocean. This species occurs on reefs, preferring areas with sandy substrates or areas of weed growth.
Since we’re inching ever closer to Ghost Banquet, there is a new page for the “Post Restart Sequels” on novel updates (link here if you want to subscribe to get chapter updates). Those saints even shifted the Sea of Lights and Ten Thousand Mountains chapter links over so it should all be in one place.
3 thoughts on “Chapter 49 Traveling Notes”
The battle was so exciting! And how cute is Poker Face saving the candy. I love White Rabbit candy too!
I can’t believe it’s almost over though 😭😭😭
These monkeys…ate 50 years too young to fight against any one of the Triangle.
That was a beautiful ending. And I still want candy. 🍬😋
There was a war in the village with a bunch of monkeys, and then one of the families who were watching a movie, offering tea to the man with a blowgun, behind their winnow. What a strange people. If I didn’t know, I would mistake them as Zhangs.