Couple of Mirrors – Chapter 11: The Funeral
‘To tell you the truth,’ says Xu Youyi, ‘no matter how much I blamed her, how much I hated her, I never really wanted her to die. Do you believe me?’
‘I believe you,’ Yan Wei replies.
Xu Youyi is moved, but then Yan Wei adds, ‘It’s no use if I’m the only one who believes in you. Other people just want to watch the spectacle unfold. They don’t care about the truth.’
‘It’s enough that you believe me,’ Xu Youyi tells her. ‘I’ll think of a way to deal with everyone else.’
‘I’m sorry…’ says Yan Wei.
‘Why are you saying sorry,’ Xu Youyi responds. ‘You’re not the one who killed her.’
Yan Wei can’t think of anything to say.
Xu Youyi rises from the table. ‘I’m a little tired,’ she says. ‘I’ll leave the washing up to you, then.’
‘Why don’t you go and get some sleep…’ says Yan Wei, looking at Xu Youyi’s retreating back.
As Yan Wei washes the dishes, she flashes back to Xu Youyi’s words from earlier: ‘ To tell you the truth, no matter how much I blamed her, how much I hated her, I never really wanted her to die. Do you believe me?’
Even though she betrayed you, Yan Wei muses, you still can’t forget the friendship that you had… Everything I’ve done — has that just brought you pain?
Yan Wei looks down at Xu Youyi’s sleeping face. What happens if you discover the truth one day? Will it feel like another betrayal?
She cups Xu Youyi’s cheek with one hand. I’m sorry…
Xu Youyi catches hold of Yan Wei’s hand.
‘Yan Wei,’ she says, ‘Zhang Wan’s funeral service is tomorrow. Can you go with me?’
At the church where Zhang Wan’s funeral is being held, mourners walk past the casket as the officiating priest prays: ‘May Sister Zhang Wan’s soul soar to our Heavenly Father… Soar towards the Heaven of eternal life, where there is no suffering…’
There’s a sudden commotion at the entrance. ‘How is she here?’ ask startled reporters.
‘Hmph, she has the gall to come here?’ demands Chu Huizi, Xu Youyi’s literary rival.
‘Miss Xu Youyi?!’ someone shouts, as Xu Youyi and Yan Wei step into the church.
‘Xu Youyi?!’ shouts Zhang Wan’s mother, who’s dressed in mourning clothes. ‘You have the nerve to show up here?’
‘Zhang Wan and I were close friends for so many years,’ says Xu Youyi. ‘Regardless of everything else, I wanted to say goodbye…’
‘You can stop being such a hypocrite!’ yells Zhang Wan’s brother. ‘Everyone knows you’re the one who got her killed! Get out! You’re not welcome here!’
Behind him, Zhang Wan’s mother wails, ‘My poor daughter! Your enemy is here! Quickly, open your eyes and see!’
Before Zhang Wan’s brother can lay his hands on Xu Youyi, Yan Wei grabs hold of his wrist. ‘Touch her and see what happens!’ she says menacingly.
‘Tchah!’ says Zhang Wan’s brother. ‘How dare come onto our territory and start trouble!’ He lashes out, and Yan Wei pins him to the floor.
‘Yan Wei…’ says a concerned Xu Youyi, looking at them.
Yan Wei lets go of Zhang Wan’s brother. ‘Let her say what she has to say, and we’ll leave.’
Xu Youyi makes her way to Zhang Wan’s casket, where she bows and lays down a white rose.
She turns and addresses the crowd. ‘Although there was some unpleasantness between Zhang Wan and me recently, and there were times when we fought, we were still very close friends for ten years. I definitely did not kill her, and I hope everyone believes me when I say that.’
‘Is that true or false?’ asks someone in the crowd.
‘Hmph,’ says Chu Huizi. ‘Crocodile tears.’
‘In order to prove that this is the case,’ Xu Youyi continues. ‘I hereby offer a reward of ten thousand yuan! If anyone succeeds in apprehending the murderer, or provides information leading to their arrest, the money is theirs!’
Yan Wei is completely taken aback.
The crowd bursts into a frenzy of discussion. ‘What!’ ‘Ten thousand yuan?!’ ‘Is she really not the killer, after all?’
‘Are you sick in the head?’ demands Chu Huizi.
Xu Youyi turns to Yan Wei. ‘Yan Wei, let’s go.’
Yan Wei, staring blankly at nothing in particular, doesn’t respond.
‘Yan Wei?’ Xu Youyi asks again.
Yan Wei comes back to herself. ‘Let’s go.’ As she follows Xu Youyi out of the church, she thinks: Xu Youyi… this is how you plan to prove your innocence?
Please view the original manhua here.
- The manhua doesn’t state exactly how the family members in mourning are related to Zhang Wan. I’m making an educated guess that the elderly woman is her mother and the younger man is her brother.
- After Xu Youyi announces that she’s offering a reward, what Chu Huizi literally says is ‘the cat weeps for the dead mouse’. I went with ‘crocodile tears’ as the closest English equivalent.