Sixth lap, seventh lap…
By the time He Yan finished the last lap, she looked as if she had been pulled out of the water.
Mak trotted over and handed her the kettle, “Brother He, please drink some water..”
He Yan looked up and gulped the contents down.
When he saw her drink the water, Instructor Liang passed by, looked at her up and down twice, shook his head, and walked away. That look clearly stated that He Yan could only be a fellow soldier.
“How did you even finish?” Hong Shan said, “What a dead brain, I think there were people running less laps next to me, they are smarter than you!”
He Yan was so tired that she didn’t want to speak, so she only said, “I don’t want to be a paramedic soldier in the army.”
“What’s wrong with being a paramedic soldier? Don’t underestimate the guerilla soldiers, people say they might not live longer than us.” Hong Shan disagreed.
“I think so too,” Mak looked longingly, “If I become a guerilla soldier, I will be able to cook more delicious food for everyone!”
He Yan replied tonelessly, “…If you want to work as a cook, then don’t join the army.”
Mak grievously looked at Shi, “Big Brother wanted me to come.”
What kind of people are they? He Yan thought as she sighed up to the heavens in her heart.
She was terribly tired and her legs were a bit soft. Both Hong Shan and Mak helped her move forward, “It’s only the first day, how long can you persist?”
As long as I can, He Yan exclaimed in her heart.
With Chief Instructor Shen’s ruthlessness, the entire day was spent in fatigue. In the afternoon, the few soldiers who were lazy and hadn’t run ten laps were arrested and beaten by the military baton. They were called worse than chickens. It was like they killed the chickens to warn the monkeys to train properly in the afternoon. At that time, no one dared to slack off.
As He Yan thought, the first half of the month was all physical training. It was nothing more than running with weights, standing under the sun, and lining up. Half a month later, the skills training finally began, and when that reached a certain level, they started to divide the camp.
In He Yan’s previous life, she was in the vanguard camp. Now she still wanted to enter the vanguard camp, but the problem was, with Xiao Jue’s training method, she would be eliminated by the time she reached the frontier. After all, physical strength was now her weakness.
She thought this as she drank the porridge in the bowl.
The congee was thick rice porridge, with all sorts of wild vegetables, fruits, and beans in it. Half a bucket of rice in the morning, and a third of the millet for dinner, with some lumps of noodles in between. If it was some special occasion, there would be soup cakes, meat and so on.
But at the beginning, they had to be satisfied with the porridge.
It had a faint taste, but because she was exhausted, she felt rather hungry. Almost no one spoke at the place where they ate as they buried their heads and relished the food.
“It would be nice to have some wine.” Hong Shan smacked his lips. “I finally understand why people don’t choose to come to the army until they have no choice but to go. This is not something a human can do.”
“I want to hunt,” Mak glanced bitterly at Shi. “Brother, I want to eat a roast rabbit.”
Shi replied, “…Wait for a few days.”
He Yan was amused. Even if he waited for another month, there was no chance of hunting. After entering the barracks, if anyone tried to run, they would be declared a deserter, and all deserters are to be executed.
After dinner, everyone went to take a bath. Hong Shan hesitated for a moment and asked, “Brother He, are you really not going?”
After a day in the sun, her whole body was sweaty and sticky. “The river is already full of people like dumplings”. Hong Sshan said, “Don’t be afraid, I will hold you and keep you safe from drowning.”
He Yan looked embarrassed, “Forget it, Brother Shan, I’ll wait until late at night, I’ll go to the river to grab a few buckets of water, and just flush it in the shallows.”
“Alright, then.” Hongshan didn’t force her, “You rest first.”
When Hongshan and the others walked away, only then did He Yan let out a sigh of relief.
It was really inconvenient to enter the army barracks. There were no separate rooms for the soldiers in the guardhouse, nor a separate tent in the field. Bathing became a big problem. She once lived a life of handcuffs, so she stayed on the embankment every night to avoid revealing herself, but then gradually, she was promoted to an officer, to a deputy general, then a chief general, and had her own tent room – these things were never a problem that time.
She didn’t expect to go back down the old road again.
He Yan lay down on the bed and rested for a while. When the people who went to the river to take bath came back one after another, everyone started to rest, and the snoring sound of Hong Shan woke He Yan up. She looked at the moon from outside the window and estimated that the time had come. She got up from the bed, jumped over Mak, rolled up her clean clothes, and sneaked out of the door.
Outside the Liang Zhou guardhouse, the field was empty, and a round bright moon shone. Maybe because it was the border, the moonlight gave a different feeling compared to the capital. He Yan crept to the river.
The river was around the guardhouse at the foot of Bai Yue Mountain, and it’s name was very interesting. It was called Wulu River. It was rumored that one day a fisherman who had lived by the river returned by boat late at night and saw a fairy who wore light makeup, dressed in plain clothes, and rode a five-colored deer on the river, hence the river’s name.
There were many boulders along the river. He Yan found a stone and placed the clean clothes behind it in order to not get them wet, then she proceeded to take off her outer clothes and then took a dip in the water.
What she had said to Hong Shan was true, because after the Xu family was drowned in the pond, she did not dare get too close to the water. She would not even come to the river if she had a choice. Therefore, even if she went in she would only stay in the shallow water.
The river was cold, and with the refreshing breeze, the summer heat felt comfortable. He Yan wiped her face, and the tiredness of the trek with sandbags in the afternoon swept away, so now every part of her body felt comfortable and relaxed. Unlike the capital, the bright moon here was as cold as snow, and it shone in the boundless wilderness as it reached the river, having its own grandeur and elegance.
“Bai Yue Mountain, Wulu River…” He Yan whispered softly, the name indeed was extremely elegant. She looked at the silver moon and thought that all she was short of was light makeup and plain clothes. If a fisherman passed by here at this moment, he might take her to be the ‘beautiful fairy’ in the rumor.
She thought about it, and it seemed funny, so she laughed out loud.
“Who?” A voice rang out in the silence, strange and familiar.
He Yan almost swallowed a mouthful of river water into her belly.
No way. At this hour? There were still people coming?
The man’s footsteps paused first, and then came towards He Yan’s direction. He Yan was ignorant and immediately hid behind a huge rock in front of her. Because she was already in shallow water, she was not far from the river and was able to see the man clearly.
He was a young man who wore a dark blue gauze embroidered with a fairy crane, which seemed to flow with the wind. He was already handsome, with a cold and graceful look, and his eyebrows and eyes were beautiful and picturesque. Under the moonlight, the long sword on his waist felt like a long shard of ice which made his expression even colder.
This beautiful young man was the commander of the Right Army, Xiao Jue.
He Yan saw the man’s appearance clearly and wailed in her heart.
This really was a narrow path.