Saturday, March 30, 2013

Battle of Changsha Novel Excerpt "Wedding Night" + Fan-made MV

In the original novel, Gu Qingming never officially proposes to Xiang Xiang with a bouquet of red roses. The drama series romanticizes the relationship a bit more.  They actually "married" in haste with no formal wedding ceremony. The "wedding" itself was just a simple dinner with Xiang Xiang's family. Below is a tough translation of a novel excerpt of the wedding night after the family dinner which "officializes" Gu Qingming as Xiang Xiang's husband.

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Surrounded by the cozy warmth generated by the burning brazier in the bedroom, Gu Qingming removed his military overcoat to put it on the hanger.  As he turned around, he noticed Xiang Xiang's disquieting expression and couldn't resist the urge to laugh out loud. He teased, "Tang Ke (meaning "wife" in local dialect of Hunan region), you will be responsible for caring for me now, such as helping to put away my coat. Don't forget to do it."

Before the echo of his voice even faded away, Xiang Xiang was already on the move to flee from the bedroom. When she reached the door, she finally recalled that she was actually in her own room and the new identity of the man standing behind her. She will be spending the rest of her life with this man.

She froze at the doorstep and fell against the door completely absorbed in her own thoughts.  Though she had waited a very long time for this day to come, she still couldn't fully accept the reality of it. She first gazed at the military overcoat, then to the brazier. Her wandering eyes roamed about the room from the blackened light duster to the burning oil lamp, but did not dare to give Gu Qingming a single glance.

Gu Qingming took a long sigh and decided to make the first move. He pulled her to stand in front of him and said in a gentle smile: "What's wrong? Didn't you ask me to wait for you? Your wait has come to fruition and now you're regretting it!"

With her heart pounding heavily against her chest, she solemnly replied: "I don't regret it. But you shouldn't use the fact that I like you to always jest at my expense. And you scold at me for the tiniest matters. I have my pride too!"

Gu Qingming pondered in his mind that only a fiesty girl like Xiang Xiang dared to profess her feelings in such a naked manner. He has tasted all delicious foods of Changsha and has been treated with the warmest hospitality by the Changsha people as well as the people of Hunan Province. This time, he finally experienced the benefits of being a son-in-law of Changsha.

Hu Xiang Xiang's thoughts and feelings are explicitly written all over on her face. He doesn't have to exhaust his brain to read her mind. Gu Qingming has finally figured out a way to deal with Xiang Xiang in the future. Just say what needs to be said. Don't speak in circles. She is far more simple and easy to please than he imagined.

He restrained his smile and glazed deeply into the blackness of her eyes.  In the gentlest voice that he has ever used, he said: "If I'm joking, would I have waited three long years for you? I even aggressively promoted myself as the son-in-law of Changsha to others. [If I was joking], would I have forced my father to only resign in helplessness and bow his head in consent to let me defend this homeland as the son-in-law of Changsha?

Compared to their haphazard marriage, this bit of information was truely good news.  She could only feel a blazing ball of fire overwhelming her whole body. Though it was grisly uncomfortable, she still couldn't take her eyes off of Gu Qingming. This determined, well-mannered handsome young man has always like her! The realization...Xiang Xiang could barely grasp the extraordinary feeling unbundling inside her. Scenes from their past encounters fluttered before her eyes. She finally managed to locate the small tangible clues that demonstrated his feelings for her. She was ecstatically happy beyond words! But then she felt a tint of indignation. She timidly said: "You haven't even courted me yet. It's not fair!"

Gu Qingming froze for a moment and then suddenly burst out in a loud laugh, which infuriated Xiang Xiang. She tried to quiet him by pulling his hard-muscled forearm against his mouth. His laughter gradually subdued into gentle smile and he took the opportunity to pull her into his arms. Xiang Xiang could see his eyes, glistening with intent, coming closer to her. She freaked. Both her eyes and mouth became the same round shape. A strange mysterious breath then rush before her and she could feel something extremely soft landed on her eyelids, nose, and chin. Finally, the softness gently closed in on her lips.

Just when she was about to faint, the warm softness left her. Feeling like a water-deprived fish restituted back to its water environment, she subconsciously grabbed onto his arm, taking one deep breath after the other. Her whole body was drained without energy.

Feeling a little guilty for causing her current "condition," he carried her to head of the bed to sit down. Gu Qingming perched his lips into a provocative smile and patted her chest to ease her breathing. After a length of time, their eyes met once again. In a sudden strangely hoarse but hesitant voice, he asked: "Tomorrow....must you really report to your school?" <------The author left  a really big hint in this subtle description about Gu Qingming's voice. Did you grasp her intention?

Since Gu Qingming brought up the topic of her high-esteemed "accomplishment, " her fuzzy eyes  immediately cleared up into a ball of shooting energy. In her excitement, she clasped at his shirt to sit up straight and started to expound with demonstrative body language the recent tumultuous events at nursing school. Gu Qingming initially listened in equal excitement. But by the time Xiang Xiang proceeded to describe the scenic beauty of Wanling, he was completely exhausted. He just curved his mouth in a smile, falling onto the bed and into a deep sleep. Xiang Xiang felt she hasn't fully finished her talk. She muttered a few words in quiet complaint before pulling the blanket to cover them both entirely. Wrapping her arms around his arm and snuggling tightly against his side, she fell into a sweet dream with soft smile on printed on her face.
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Are you disappointed nothing of "substance" happened between Xiang Xiang and Gu Qingming on their wedding night? I guess we gotta wait for the TV series to come out to see anything with "substance."

In the meantime, enjoy this nicely edited fan-made MV. The song is taken from Wallace Chung's series Too Late to Say I Love You called "A Sentimental Person." I didn't think the song would fit Battle of Changsha but it actually turned out pretty well.

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