Sitting on her knees next to her mother in the middle of the entrance room she clutches her palm over her dress material above her knees, biting her lower lip she lets the tears flow down her cheeks,her eyes glued to her dead brother who is laying pale in front of her on the white cloth.
Taking a deep breath in she sniffs her nose and moves her gaze upwards to see her father the great lord Wen walking to and fro with his eyebrows furrowed.
He is tensed up due to his son's death but the matter which is bothering him is not the death of his son,he is worried about the entry form of the great school of scholars and leaders.
During those times the son of each kingdom gathers in this school which is respected and it's a must for all the son of the kingdom to study there to be the next leader of the general and they bring the victory and power to their home at the end which proves the greatest state of all.
"Qin,"he stops in his tracks and looks towards his right to see his wife and daughter moaning over the body.
Mrs Wen looks up at him her eyes filled up with tears which would stream down at any time.
"Let XingXing go to the school of scholars," he orders his tone dry and stern.
"What?,"she gasps getting up from her knees she walks towards her husband who is examining XingXing from top to bottom.
"It's a place where only men is allowed,"she says softly trying not to scare XingXing who is already broken.
"So...,"Lord Wen turns around to meet his wife's eyes which is begging him not to this.
"If people finds out,it will ruin her life"she cries falling over her knees while he looks down at her with his rigid expression showing no emotion.
"Are you trying to disobey me?,"he asks aloud which made XingXing to flinch as his voice echoed in the empty room.
She looks up to see the scene in front of her,wiping the tears with the back of her palm she inhales a deep breath and leaves it out. Getting up on her feet she bows down slightly "As you wish father,"she utters softly her voice never cracking down.
"Maa, it's okay," she comforts her mom,walking towards her mom she helps her to get up from the floors, holding her mother in her arms she plasters a smile on her face looking at her father "I'll replace Wan ke,"she says her voice stern which shows that she is never afraid of the outcome.
"Wale,"he calls out aloud,the wooden door slides open immediately and he bows down infront of his master to obey his command.
"Yes,Master,"Wale asks bending low his eyes fixed to the wooden floor.
"Inform everyone that my daughter was killed and the body is not found,"he orders , bending low he covers the face of his son with the white material folded over his neck.
"Yes master," Wale leaves the place walking out with other guards to spread the news.
"What's that?,"XingXing asks pouting at her brother Wan ke who is hiding something behind his back.
Getting up from the water in the shallow side of the river she moves her arm in front opening her palm in front of his view, her lips formed to a wide smile when Wanke looks at her and pats her head.
"For you,"he grins moving his left arm in front and holds his balled fist on her open palm.
"Give me,"Xing whines being curious to know what it is.
"Here,"he drops something hard on her palm ,she moves her palm to her view immediately as the thing made contact on her skin.
"Wooow,"she holds the white stone with her three fingers smiling at it while raising it high.
"Here,"Wan ke grasps her wrist gently and moves it to the direction of the sun rays.
"Beautiful,"she giggles her eyes widens in amusement as the colour of the stone shades with red and yellow.
"It's rare," Wan ke looks at his sister who is grinning happily looking at the stone"Just like you," he smiles which makes her to look at him.
"Thanks,"she hugs him "You are the best brother in earth," she steps back, her smile never leaving her face, she raises the stone in the air again her eyes filled up with excitement.
"Watch out," Xing shrieks when Wan ke pulls her to his side making her collide over his chest.
She gasps watching the arrow stuck in between the stones in the shallow side of the river,moving her gaze away she looks up at her brother with knitted eyebrows she follows his gaze to see few men wearing grey dresses their face masked with a piece of cloth coming out of the forest.
Three men were on horse backs with their swords and the other three men marched forward with the bow and arrow.
"Run," Wan ke screams dragging his sister with him who tries to match his pace ,they run into the forest as fast as they could not knowing which direction they are running to as the men were chasing them throwing the arrows in the their direction but luckily none of them attacked them as they were running in zig zag.
"Why are they chasing us?,"Xing pants bending low she rests her palms over her knees taking deep breaths in and out relieved that they are far away from them.
"Xing," Wan ke gulps down his saliva and walks towards his sister who is leaning against the huge tree trunk "You run to seek help, I'll distract them,"he says looking straight into her eyes reassuring that everything is going to be fine.
"No....," she stands straight and keeps a step forward lets go together I'm not a coward," she smiles trying to calm herself and her brother.
"It's not the time to joke," Wan ke utters his voice low and stern. His lips twitches up to a smile the very next second looking at Xing who is smiling widely at him "I'm not afraid as long as you are with me," she grasps his wrist to lead the way.
"Run," he abruptly pushes her hard which made her to tumble backwards and fall on the ground.
Getting up from the ground she looks straight ignoring the scratches on her skin,her eyes widens in horror to see her brother laying on the ground on his stomach ,an arrow stabbed on his back bone,his eyes in the direction of the horses galloping away.
Her eyes wells up with tears while she looks at him in astonishment.
"Wan ke,"her voice comes out in mere whisper, getting up she walks towards him with her swollen foot which has knocked hard on a rock. She drags her feet and makes her way to him, falling on her knees she holds the arrow with her trembling hands.
"Yo...u a..re go..nna be....ok...ay,"she stutters trying to hold the arrow hard, closings her eyes shut she pulls it out and throws it away immediately.
Turning his body she lays his head on her lap "Let's get home and you will be fine,"she stutters cupping his face,the blood in her palm staining his cheeks.
"N...o,"Wan ke tries to speak but he couldn't as his throat went dry and he didn't have the strength to do it.
"Don't...please,"Xing looks down at him into his eyes begging him not to close his.
"Be strong,"Wan ke says his voice comes out softly and he tries to smile difficulty trying not to scare his sister.
"Wan..ke,"she sniffs looking at him close his eyes as his head fell low.
"No..no..no..wake up,"she screams letting her tears fall out as she couldn't hold it anymore, hugging him tight she screams while she she cries out aloud "You said that you would be with me," she screams with her aching dry throat ,her tears falling uncontrollably.
"Please.....,"she hugs him tight against her chest "Please,"she screams crying out loud.
Xing sits in front of the mirror looking at her image, her two maids are seated behind her. Unpinning her hair they let her long black straight hair fall over her back.
"You have no need to do this,"Mrs Wen cries looking at her in sympathy trying to stop her decision.
"Cut,"Xing commands her voice low, taking the pair of scissors they cut her hair short,too short.
"I'm doing this for Wan ke,"she smiles at her mom looking at the reflection "I will avenge for him," she removes the top material of her dress letting it slide down her soft shoulders.
"He won't agree for it too," her mom cries holding her shoulder she turns Xing to face her.
"Then I'll do it for myself maa," she smiles showing that she is not afraid of it.
"Maa I know what I'm doing," she cuts her off , grabbing the long piece of thin white cloth she walks behind the curtains to cover her breasts tight.