Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Flower-Guarding Bell - Gu Long

This book was first published in 1962. The story was the adventures of Lamkiong Peng, the 5th student of the Powerful Dragon. Powerful Dragon was number one swordsman at that time. The story began with the long-waited duel between Powerful Dragon and his ex-lover Yap Jiu-pek, to determine which one of them was the best. It ended with Powerful Dragon missing. However, he had a time to left a message to his 5th student, his youngest and most talented student, to keep his sword and guard a coffin.

Separated from other students, Lamkiong Peng, who was the only son of a wealthy merchant, found that the coffin contained a beautiful lady. She was known as an evil woman, but as it was his master's last wish, Lamkiong Peng did what he could to guard her and protect her. As soon as the news about her re-appearance known, people came to kill her. Actually it was a misunderstanding that made the Powerful Dragon fought her ten years ago and it ended with her imprisoned in the coffin since. During that time she did not age and she was still as beautiful as ever. [Like a fairy tale, right?] Lamkiong Peng and she fell in love with each other, but Powerful Dragon also left another wish, that was for Lamkiong Peng to marry Miss Yap Man-jing, the student of Yap Jiu-pek.

Meanwhile, a mysterious man tried to rule the martial world. He gathered best swordsmen to work for him, and those who refused were given drugs that they forgot everything but subdued his commands.

There was also a mysterious island inhabited by legendary swordsmen. Lamkiong Peng was given a task by his parents to deliver all the Lamkiong's wealth to the island as a part of a pact made hundreds of years ago by their anchestors. Those who had gone there would never go back, but as Lamkiong Peng was our hero in this story, he of course came back to the mainland, with high-skilled kungfu to beat the mysterious man and his gang.

As for the title, Lamkiong Peng's parents and uncle used 3 pairs of bells to signal each other if there was a danger. The bells were later given to Lamkiong Peng and he could give them to the woman he liked.

The web of the plots was quite complicated, but still could be enjoyed. This was one of Khu Lung's first works anyway. But because there were so many to tell in this little book, the characters's development was limited. The previous book I read 'Tale of A Wandering Swordsman' was better in this aspect.

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