Shen Yuan's first day at PIDW was the worst day of his life.
- He has died. Dying is unpleasant and horrible, as well as very frustrating. And better he forgets the causes of his death. They are humiliating.
- Has he been reincarnated in a novel? In the worst novel he has ever read in his past life? WHY?
- Now he is Shen Yuan, the twin brother OF THE DAMN SCUM VILLAIN. SYSTEM, I DEMAND A REFUND!!!!!!!!!!!!
- Shen Yuan has suddenly awakened as a teenager in a manor house. The house is nice and elegant, but he is a servant. No, worse: he is a slave and they send him to do unpleasant, tedious, and disgusting tasks. By noon, Shen Yuan is tired and frustrated from so much yelling.
- The young lord chooses him to carry his things on the way to town. He is a spoiled brat who talks in a pompous voice about himself, his fabulous talents, and his even more fabulous future, while Shen Yuan is about to pass out from exhaustion. The only exercise he did in his past life was climbing the stairs! And he lived on the first floor!
- Now the spoiled young man is dead. And Shen Yuan gazes with horror at the rogue cultivator pointing his blood-stained sword at him.
- The rogue cultivator is also dead. And a scruffy teenager with wild animal eyes looks at him in amazement. "A-Yuan," he mutters. "It's really you!"
- Shen Yuan is kidnapped by the scum villain who drags him to their disastrous fate: Cang Qiong Mountain Sect.
Even as a skinny teenager, the scum villain is terrifying. He acts with the stealth of a panther and doesn't hesitate to steal on their way to Cang Qiong Mountain Sect. At least he hasn't killed anyone else. Shen Yuan still trembles as he remembers the cold blood with which he disposed of his master to protect him. What if he finds out that his brother isn't real? Will he also kill him?
The scum villain is also a liar. At first, Shen Yuan was stunned. Shen Jiu (not Shen Qingqiu yet) doesn't look like the character in the book. He is grumpy, aggressive, and unrefined. Every time someone tries to mess with them, he threatens to stab them in the back. Sometimes Shen Yuan manages to avoid it. Sometimes not. However, when they arrive at Cang Qiong Mountain Sect, Shen Jiu hides his worst qualities behind a mask of docility. And the bastard starts to imitate him! According to Shen Jiu: so no one will suspect their past as runaways slaves.
Shen Yuan would rather run away from the sect and avoid Luo Binghe, but Shen Jiu is a trickster: he gets them to be illegally accepted, and before Shen Yuan knows what is happening, they are both wearing the Qing Jing Peak uniforms. It's all too fast as if the plot is pushing them into their place. Besides being stunned, Shen Yuan is excited because he is going to learn cultivation! But also terrified of his evil twin.
There are still many years until Luo Binghe arrives and Shen Jiu is a disciple, not a Peak Lord yet. Perhaps he can bend straight the scum villain before he becomes the horrible Shen Qingqiu.
But it's very complicated. The first night Shen Jiu tries to sneak out of the disciples' rooms. Please! You're still a kid! You can't be thinking about sex so soon!
Despite tiredness and sleep, Shen Yuan pursues him to drag him down the virtuous path.
“Jiu-Ge! Where are you going?” He whispers as he grabs his hand.
Although Shen Jiu is obnoxious and aggressive towards everyone, he only relaxes with him and that is an advantage that Shen Yuan cannot miss.
"I can't sleep," he says, shrugging.
"You can't break the rules on the first day. Please come back."
Shen Yuan uses his best tactic: puppy's eyes. Thanks to this resource, he has saved many lives. And now it's time to save Shen Jiu's future! But his evil twin stiffens and for the first time, he seems to hesitate. It is incoherent that it costs him more to return to the room than to spare a life.
“Please,” he insists. “Do it for me.”
Why is there insecurity in the scum villain's eyes? Why did he stop looking so terrifying tonight to act like a scared, wounded animal? Suddenly, Shen Yuan is no longer holding him, but he is holding on to him.
“I can’t,” he acknowledges, showing an unexpected weakness. “I can try it during the day, A-Yuan. But not at night.”
“Being surrounded by men.”
“They are kids! Like us!”
But Shen Jiu trembles and his fear is more evident. Shen Yuan begins to recognize the signs of scars and wounds that haven’t yet healed and that until that moment he had ignored due to his fear. Fuck, he thinks before hugging him.
"I'm with you, okay? You can sleep with me and I'll protect you at night, Jiu-Ge."
Shen Yuan drags him into the room carefully and delicately, whispering to him as if he is an abandoned cat that could run away at any moment. Shen Jiu is guided to the bed with unexpected docility and hugs him when the two of them lie down.
"I missed you, A-Yuan," he whispers.
And Shen Yuan's heart constricts a little with guilt since he is not his real brother, but a stranger. But tonight the scum villain is just a broken child. With his eyes closed and muttering in his sleep, he doesn't seem so dangerous.
But he is. And very dangerous. While Shen Yuan protects him at night so they can both sleep peacefully, Shen Jiu protects him during the day from practically everyone: from their martial siblings who make fun of them for being identical, their weak cultivation, and all their deficiencies; from Bai Zhan Peak disciples wanting to fight; from Yue Qingyuan, who one day appears and Shen Yuan is astonished while Shen Jiu tries to rip out his eyes with his nails telling him that he is a traitor for abandoning them.
Unlike Shen Jiu, Shen Yuan knows how to write and calculate correctly thanks to his past life. But Shen Jiu has a talent for calligraphy and painting. The two teach each other and Shen Yuan uses his old knowledge to make them both stand out by writing (plagiarized) poetry and doing math.
That part is fun. And satisfying when their shizun starts to recognize their talent and their martial siblings shut up.
Shen Yuan even manages to improve Yue Qingyuan and Shen Jiu's relationship by ensuring that he is happy that they are reunited! Shen Jiu still growls when Yue Qingyuan is gone, but at least he doesn't yell at him in public anymore.
However, his near-perfect life is ruin during Cang Qiong Sect’s Annual Twelve Peak Martial Arts Meeting. Shen Yuan had forgotten about that plot detail and that is why he cannot prevent future War God Liu Qingge (although he still has another name) from defeating Shen Jiu.
And to Shen Yuan's horror, Shen Jiu swears that he will one day kill him.
“No, Jiu-Ge!” He cries, truly terrified at the thought of Liu Qingge's death and all its consequences. “Forget him! I think you are the best!”
But for once, being the adorable little brother doesn't work. Shen Jiu is so pissed off that there are sparks in his eyes and poison in his words. It is no longer the sweet kitten that sleeps with him, but the raging snake that hides in the grass.
Shen Yuan needs a new trick to calm him down.
“I have an idea!” He says as he drags him to his secret place in the bamboo forest. “Trust me, okay? Killing your enemies is not profitable: you have to destroy them until they recognize their defeat. That is the real victory! And we are not the mindless brutes of Bai Zhan Peak, but the strategists of Qing Jing Peak. We will defeat Liu-shidi without violence.”
Perhaps Shen Yuan is being affected by Shen Jiu's malice.
His words catch the attention of his twin, who smirks wickedly.
"I hear you, A-Yuan."
First plan: defeat a powerful and terrifying beast, superior to all that Liu-shidi has hunted. They will show him that thanks to their knowledge of monsters and good strategy, they can hunt anything and leave it at Bai Zhan Peak. With almost no wounds and bloodless fur. A perfect piece of hunting that will be the envy of even the master of Bai Zhan Peak. As a signature, they left a green ribbon and the Qing Jing Peak symbol.
The war has started.
Liu-shidi appears at Qing Jing Peak very flustered, asking what it’s the meaning of that. Shen Yuan covers his mouth to stifle a laugh as Shen Jiu bathes his eyelashes and sweetly announces that it is a gift for Liu-shidi.
Speechless, Liu-shidi runs off, surely flushed with fury.
The second plan: give him a poem.
The two brothers lie on the grass while discussing which poem they will write.
“It has to be a complicated one,” Shen Jiu comments meanly. "He surely won't understand its meaning."
"Too bad there are no poems in which you mock your enemy with metaphors."
"Then I'll write it," he announces. There is a wicked gleam in his eyes.
The two laugh as they discuss possible metaphors that sound pretty but are actually ironic. As Shen Jiu writes, Shen Yuan lazily closes his eyes and allows the sun to caress his cheeks. Maybe he could get used to that new life, with a touch of magic and another of fun.
A few days later, the two arrive at Bai Zhan Peak. Shen Yuan hides a smile behind a fan as he watches Shen Jiu walk across the training ground. His presence is so graceful that even dust doesn't stain his clothes. He stands out among the sweaty young men who look at him suspiciously. Generally, it is Bai Zhan Peak who annoys Qing Jing Peak and not the other way around.
"Liu-shidi," he purrs with a venomous voice. "I have this present for you."
Their strategies have worked, as Liu-shidi stiffens before squinting suspiciously. Shen Jiu extends the poem to him, which in itself is an affront to a boy from Bai Zhan Peak who just likes to fight. But its meaning is even more twisted: it is a promise written with metaphors that one day he will defeat him.
The poem became famous in the entire sect. Their shizun regrets not being able to read it and congratulates both of them on their prowess. Although it has unexpected consequences: their shizun interprets that they want to improve their relations with Liu-shidi and send the three of them to defeat some ghosts.
The third plan happens by chance: save Liu-shidi's life.
The three of them are fighting when one of the ghosts attacks Liu-shidi from behind and Shen Jiu protects him. A shout of victory escapes Shen Yuan and immediately runs to high-five with his twin (Shen Yuan doesn't mind being anachronistic).
“You!” Liu-shidi growls, pointing the sword at Shen Jiu. "Are you trying to attack me from behind?"
His doubt offends Shen Jiu, who adopts his most arrogant expression to hide his anger. But Shen Yuan intervenes, stepping in front of him to defend his brother.
"He just saved your life, you disgraceful shidi! If Jiu-Ge had wanted to stab you in the back, he would have succeeded. He's very good at it."
Perhaps Shen Yuan has talked too much and Shen Jiu drags him, annoyed, into the carriage. But for the rest of the trip, Liu-shidi glances at Shen Jiu. He doesn't dare to say anything, although the intention is evident in his expression.
Shen Jiu remains furious for several days and has no intention of continuing with his revenge plan, but rather to forget about that annoying shidi.
A week later, Shen Jiu manages to cajole Shen Yuan into going to a brothel. Shen Yuan only agrees to make his brother calm down a bit, although he walks to the Warm Red Pavilion shaking and terrified. He didn't even visit a brothel in his past life! He has only read PIDW to get an idea of what those places are like.
To his surprise, a brothel is a nice place where they can drink and listen to music. Shen Jiu ends up making friends with the girls who work there and even plays a song with a pipe. His music is beautiful and Shen Yuan listens, very happy that his evil twin has become a decent person.
Unfortunately, when leaving the brothel the two stumble upon a group of disciples from Bai Zhan Peak. Liu-shidi is among them. The boy's eyes widen as an intense blush covers his cheeks.
"SHAMELESS!" He yells in the middle of the street, attracting all the attention.
As Shen Yuan stutters in embarrassment, Shen Jiu shrugs indifferently and drags him over to the Cang Qiong Mountain Sect.
But after that day, rumors break out across the sect.
“This is a disaster! Terrible!” Shen Yuan wailed in their secret place. He has put his hands to his head and whimpers thinking about all the dire consequences of those rumors.
"We have done nothing wrong. It is not our fault that others are envious who take every opportunity to tell lies."
"We have to disprove the rumor!"
"Why? I don't care what people think."
But Shen Jiu smirks maliciously while playing with his fan.
“You know what? Let’s keep playing. If Liu-shidi intends to embarrass us in front of the entire sect, it is our time to embarrass him.”
The fourth plan: write porn to Liu-shidi.
In the end, it turns out that reading PIDW has its advantages.
“You have wonderful ideas, A-Yuan,” Shen Jiu laughs while writing.
Shen Jiu has beautiful calligraphy and Shen Yuan knows ridiculous porn. Even though he is unsure about the consequences of that prank, it is too late to regret it. After all, it was Shen Yuan who started it all. But it was for good intention!
In less than a month, the rumors of the Shen brothers visiting brothels are forgotten by the appearance of mysterious erotic stories starring the head disciple of Bai Zhan Peak. They are absurd stories, but beautifully written and with highly spicy content. And very, very graphic.
“SHEN JIU! SHEN YUAN!” Liu Qingge appears on Qing Jing Peak in a rage.
Recently, the three of them received their spirit swords, and now the two destined enemies have drawn them. And that is not in Shen Yuan's plans! He must stop them!
Quickly, he stands between them.
“Sorry, Liu-shidi,” he says apologetically while bowing his head. His brother growls in disbelief, while Liu-shidi squints his eyes suspiciously. “We just wanted you to feel the same as us. We don't like everyone talking about our private life, either.”
“But you go to brothels! I've never... done any of that .” He splutters as a blush covers his proud face.
“We could fix it,” Shen Jiu mutters maliciously, but he falls silent when Shen Yuan looks at him warningly and Liu-shidi pales.
“First, we've only been there once. Second, if you had asked you would have discovered that we were drinking and talking to the girls. Just talking,” he adds. “Ah! And Jiu-Ge played music. If you apologize and deny the rumors, we will also apologize and acknowledge the authorship of the stories.”
“And they are also false,” Shen Jiu doesn't miss that opportunity to make another malicious comment. "As if a virgin like you had such interesting adventures. Or such skill."
Liu-shidi opens his mouth, but he is so flushed and furious and stunned, that in the end, he doesn't say anything. He draws his sword and stomps off. Shen Yuan looks at his figure curiously.
"You know, Jiu-Ge? I always thought he would grow up to be a muscular brute, but our shidi is unexpectedly cute."
"Yeah. Too bad his personality is so annoying."
You can't say anything!
Although everyone suspected the authorship of the stories, once Liu-shidi apologized for misinterpreting them, they too apologized and accepted their shizun's punishment. She yelled at them for two hours in front of the entire peak about their shameless attitude and little characteristic of the elegance that she expected of them.
In private, she just tugged at their ears.
"Next time, show me what you write first. It is unfair that you dedicate all your talents to that brat from Bai Zhan Peak and not to your shizun."
That was their only punishment.
The fifth plan: give Liu-shidi a painting.
“He must accept our gift of apology,” Shen Jiu comments, as malicious as ever. "But it is a gift that he is not interested in nor will he appreciate. Perhaps his brute martial siblings laugh at him! It is perfect revenge."
“But Jiu-Ge, the painting you are doing is very beautiful. Shizun is going to scold us again.”
“I don’t care.”
But Liu-shidi accepts it, murmuring a “Thanks”. And everyone else surrounds him, curious and whispering among themselves, without getting the reaction they expected.
The brothers run out of ideas and for a few months there is peace in the sect. Until one morning Liu Qingge lands on Qing Jing Peak and walks towards them with a determined glint in his eyes.
"You win," he announces, still proud, but without the usual aggressiveness or mistrust. "I accept."
Shen Jiu and Shen Yuan exchange a satisfied look. They had done it! They had achieved a victory without violence! Liu-shidi has accepted his defeat!
"I accept your courtship."
Shen Jiu and Shen Yuan freeze in surprise. And this time, it is Liu-shidi who gives them a gift.