Ballad of Ten Thousand Gu
Translation of 《万蛊谣》
Author: Ye Xiao [叶笑]
Genre: Xuanhuan, Historical, Romance, Angst, Master-Disciple, Short Story
Translation Status: Complete
Raws: originally published under the 飞魔幻 magazine
Before she jumped into the pond filled with ten thousand gu, Ah Lai asked her, ‘Did you ever regret meeting him?’
Su Bai watched her quietly, her eyes clear. After a long moment, she lifted her lips and smiled. ‘It was the greatest blessing of my life to have met him.’
And she leapt off the steps.
She thought, no matter how difficult her love was, no matter how she hated and then despaired, in this life, she was immensely fortunate.
Because she had once loved a person so deeply.
Even if, he had never loved her.
The Gu in the title refers to a venom-based poison. The traditional preparation of the gu poison involves sealing several venomous creatures (e.g. centipede, snake, scorpion) inside a closed container, where they devour one another to concentrate their toxins into a single survivor.
There are two titles based on the two different versions of this story:
- 万蛊谣 (wàn gǔ yáo) – the new version, also the one I’ve translated. The biggest change was seeing the story from Yue Chi’s perspective as he travelled through Su Bai’s memories. I liked the way the author chose to narrate the story.
- 如蛊相思 (rú gǔ xiāng sī) – the older version. It explains some parts of the story in greater depth, such as Ah Lai’s ending. The summary above is actually an excerpt from this version, since the author never wrote a summary for this short story.