3/16/13

Xiaowei II

Previously ~ Xiaowei

And now, I will tell you a story of love.

No, I'm not talking about that fickle man who landed me a prison sentence.  I'm talking about the woman who gave me a second chance.

When I was freed from the icy abyss the first time, I went on a dedicated search for heart.  It couldn't be just any heart, of course; I needed the willing heart of a loving mortal.

So with my powers of illusion I arranged my own attack by three bandits.  A young man in golden armor rescued me, whisking me off on his horse and into the mountains.


He was prettier than most, with a strange golden mask covering half his face.  He never spoke, which I thought was a bit odd.  And though I knew better than to fall in love again, it wouldn't have bothered me to share his bed.


He built us a campfire, and I played him a sweet song on my lute, hoping to warm him to me, even if just to get him to speak.  But as I plucked the strings, I felt the cold return.  I could hear the ice growing the branches and leaves of a nearby tree, and spreading across the grass.  Just as it tried to reclaim me, I jumped behind my savior.


That's when I noticed how loudly and strongly his heart beat, and how his body was so hot it could repel ice.  I knew I'd found The One.  I tried to seduce him but failed; he wouldn't speak to me or sleep next to me, and he refused all my advances.


While he slept, I summoned a scorpion to sting him into immobility.  As I attempted to examine him further to see why his body was so special, I realized "he" was actually a "she."  And not just any she, but a Princess of the Empire.  She wore the mask to hide a horrible scar she'd gotten during a bear attack.

She was en route to meet with her childhood sweetheart who'd left her years before.  I went with her; we were guests in his home.  After seeing the power of her body, I knew better than to ever leave her side.


I served her as a handmaiden.  I noticed that she hated her face and thought herself ugly. I, of course, came to view her as the most beautiful woman on earth.


I slept by her side every night in the same flat bed, surrounded by candles.  It was how I stayed warm and safe from the abyss.


Of course, she became horrified when she realized I was a demon.  But I assured her I meant her no harm; I needed that remarkable heart of hers to beat as loudly and as powerfully for as long as possible.


I offered her a trade: my beautiful, immortal body for her warm, mortal body...scars and all.  I told her once she had my body and my powers, there was no man she couldn't have.  I told her that even her noble, chivalrous childhood sweetheart wouldn't tell her no.


She didn't believe me right away, until she returned to our bedchamber one day and saw how the ice had claimed me.

I called for her to save me, and by just wrapping herself around me, she drove away the cold.



I finally confessed my whole story, telling her of the man who said he loved me.  All I had ever wanted was to love him, to be his wife, but he told me that despite his affection for me, he could not leave his wife.  And when they died, I used my magic to rescue them both.




My princess showed me such compassion...you will understand why I say this is a story of love.

Despite her love for her childhood sweetheart, her father the Emperor had promised to the prince of some barbaric land.  She warned me that if I took her body, I'd have to fulfill that promise.  To be human, I told her I didn't care.

So...we traded places.





Of course...the barbaric prince turned out to be the corpse of a man whose heart I'd stolen two months earlier.  His sister sought to use my princess's heart during the solar eclipse to bring the prince back to life.  She failed, and my princess and I instead became one body during the eclipse.  I shared her existence until the end of her life.

For years after her death, I continued to seek out a woman like my princess, one whose heart was rare and whose body was warm enough to repel the ice.  As it turned out, such a body was quite rare.

The closest I came was centuries later, when I crossed paths with two Vampire Slayers.

Next ~ Hotel, Dramatis Personae

14 comments:

  1. I would like it if you could make Xiaowei more villainous. She is, afterall, a demon with little respect for mortality and thus very little compassion.

    Background for the non-initiated: Demons and immortals are supposed to live in their own 'god plane' that somewhat intersects with our mortal plane, but are supposed to keep apart. Today, the word 'huli-jing' (fox demon) is applied to 'homewreckers' or 'sluts', usually female due to misogyny. A fox is literally a foxy beast, and when it strives for supernatural powers and/or practices villainy, it is referred to as a demon. The legends of the 1000-year old fox is that when fox is 1000, it can take on human form. Before then it must animate the captured/stolen bodies of the dead (~500), and before then it is just in its true form, the animal shape. Before 1000, a demon mostly just acts like an animal, but enjoys eating humans and babies. The taste gets more refined as a demon gets more exposure to human emotions and they start farming human emotion, by seeding despair and destruction and then feeding off of them basically til they drive the humans to commit suicide in some way. Eventually, this extends to a demon wanting full possession of a human. As to why a demon would want to take on human form is connected to the ideas of karma/reincarnation. The idea is that humans are the only ones who deal with karma on this planet, and the cycle of karma/reincarnation gives humans a unique perpective that some demons desire. It's basically "grass is greener on the other side". Some get so obsessed with this idea that they strive to enter the cycle of karma by spending 1000 years studying to be human (this includes practicing compassion and empathy (in Buddhist tales, they would try to reach enlightenment, but I personally reject this.)). So for Xiaowei to give up 1000 years of her past for that guy was no small deal. She's crazy but she's not the only one. Some humans strive for a demon's 1000 year spirit for its supernatural powers. There's lots of tales about the reverse vampirism that occurs when humans capture a demon and feeds off of their vitality to nefarious ends. (Psst, the reason I love Green Snake so much is that you get to see a demon that is 1000, and a demon who is 500 and their rather catastrophic life among humans, and the ultimate consequences of wanting to be human. Green Snake is my hero). And then there's the Taoist side of the story about the natural order of things. Most of the exorcists you see in fox/demon stories are Taoist because they're supposed to maintain the 'natural order'. So a demon turning mortal or a mortal turning into a demon is unnatural, as well as a demon loving a human and vice versa. They'll face many who will oppose them along the way.

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    1. Woman...pace yourself. You're doing some serious spoiler damage to my Xiaowei arc here! I'm trying to do this slowly and painstakingly.

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    2. Today, the word 'huli-jing' (fox demon) is applied to 'homewreckers' or 'sluts', usually female due to misogyny.

      And there's a specific reason I went with this name for her assumed persona in Hotel. *shakes head* Killing my story, girl!

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    3. Should I delete the comment? Haha, sorry. That's twice I apologized now. Will shut up. XD

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    4. Oh, leave it, sweetheart. The background may make things easier to understand.

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  2. --- [SPOILER ALERT for Painted Skin i&ii ahead]

    Ankhesen, I didn't feel like Wang Sheng ever loved Xiaowei, he lusted after her. He and she didn't quite know the difference, which is what Sheng's wife pointed out. She didn't really understand until the very end when she gives up 1000-yrs of her life for his sorry ass. I imagine that's what actually got her in trouble with the other demons.

    "I needed the willing heart of a loving man" - I wasn't very comfortable with this line. I don't get the feeling that Foxes have a preference. Her relationship with Sheng's heart was like a stupid first love, but then people can't choose who they fall for. In that sense, Xiaowei is still very innocent which is basically the essence of a demon: they don't understand love and hate the way humans do.

    In Painted Skin 2, Xiaowei targeted the Princess right away. She assumed it was a man due to social conventions, but doesn't hesitate to seduce her after learning she's a women. The Princess's relationship with Xiaowei was basically a covenant with the devil, and she wasn't afraid of her own destruction. And then in the end, Xiaowei shows her hand when she returns the lives that she ruined, and merged with the Princess. I'd say they loved each other. That's like ultimate sex. A much healthier relationship.

    Can't tell you how much I'm loving your entry into the world of foxes. I can't help but wonder what music you're listening to as you write this.

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    1. I didn't feel like Wang Sheng ever loved Xiaowei, he lusted after her.

      Hon! I already know this, remember? That's why I keep repeating the line that he told her and she believed him.

      "I needed the willing heart of a loving man" - I wasn't very comfortable with this line. I don't get the feeling that Foxes have a preference.

      Remember? Xiaowei doesn't want "a dead heart full of fear", so to me, she would prefer it someone gave their willingly, out of love (or what they think is love), with no regrets. She makes a big deal about someone loving another person so much they'd be willing to die for them.

      I'm on the same page as you in terms of Xiaowei not giving a shit about humans. But I think that as she grows older and interacts with more people, she realizes she needs them to give a shit about her in order for her to get what she wants. In other words, she's not trying to fall in love and live out some girlhood romance; she's still the cold-hearted manipulative demon we've grown to love. She just wants someone to love her so she can get what she wants.

      Don't worry...I plan to be faithful to her characteristics. But I'm weaving a long, complex narrative which will span multiple fandoms, and so I'm taking some necessary license. Consider the above a taste of the lesbian fox fic you requested.

      So just sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride, boo.

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    2. "I needed the willing heart of a loving man"

      ^ Sorry, I meant a male or female preference. Keyword: "Man", not "loving"

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    3. Good point! I can change that!

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  3. I'll ignore the commentary.

    *nods* Proceed.




















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  4. That was... Some commentary.

    Nice use of the pictures.

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    1. We take our Fox Demon fandom very seriously here.

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