Concubine Strikes Bandits: Courage and Martial Skills in a Tale of Intrigue

Discover the remarkable story of a concubine with hidden martial skills who transforms her family's fate in the face of danger.

In the western outskirts of Yidu, there lived a wealthy family by the name of Mr. So-and-so, who was extremely rich and possessed great wealth. He had a concubine who was exceptionally beautiful and graceful. However, the primary wife subjected the concubine to countless humiliations and torments, even resorting to harsh beatings. Despite this mistreatment, the concubine served the primary wife with utmost respect. Mr. So-and-so felt pity for the concubine and frequently offered words of comfort in private, yet the concubine never uttered a word of complaint.

One fateful night, dozens of bandits scaled the walls and nearly broke down the door of their house. Mr. So-and-so and his primary wife were petrified with fear, trembling and not knowing what to do. It was then that the concubine rose silently, feeling her way around the room in the darkness until she found a flat wooden water-carrying pole. She unlatched the door and suddenly charged outside. The bandits were thrown into disarray. The concubine swung the pole, creating a howling wind, and the iron hook made a “ding-dang” sound as she knocked down four or five of the intruders. The bandits lost their morale and fled in panic, screaming in all directions. In their haste, they couldn’t climb back over the wall and fell down, wailing as if they had lost their souls.

The concubine propped the pole against the ground, looked at them, and smiled, saying, “You people are not even worth me personally taking action. You dared to imitate bandits! I won’t kill you, because doing so would tarnish my honor.” She then let them all escape. Mr. So-and-so was astonished and asked, “How did you acquire such skills?” It turned out that the concubine’s father was a martial arts teacher, and she had inherited all of his abilities. In all likelihood, even a hundred people would not be a match for her.

The primary wife was especially frightened and regretted being deceived by appearances all along. From that day on, she treated the concubine with kindness, and the concubine remained unfailingly polite. Some of the neighboring women asked the concubine, “Why do you endure beatings and abuse from your sister-in-law, as if you were a pig or a dog, and even offer your neck willingly to the whip and cane?” The concubine replied, “This is my duty, and I dare not say otherwise.” Upon hearing these words, people admired her even more for her virtuous character.

Yi Shi said: The concubine possessed a unique skill, which she had kept secret for several years, and it was only after facing adversity that she finally transformed the primary wife from fierceness to kindness. Ah, Ah! Mr. Jia shot a wild chicken, and it brought a smile to his wife’s face; Xue Wancheng won a bet with a dagger, and then the Princess of Danyang returned home with him in the same carriage. It can be seen that skills are invaluable and should not be abandoned!

《妾击贼》

益都西鄙之贵家某者,富有巨金。蓄一妾,颇婉丽。而冢室凌折之,鞭挞横施,妾奉事之惟谨。某怜之,往往私语慰抚,妾殊未尝有怨言。一夜,数十人逾垣入,撞其屋扉几坏。某与妻惶遽丧魄,摇战不知所为。妾起,嘿无声息,暗摸屋中,得挑水木杖一,拔关遽出。群贼乱如蓬麻。妾舞杖动,风鸣钩响,击四五人仆地,贼尽靡,骇愕乱奔。墙急不得上,倾跌咿哑,亡魂失命。妾拄杖于地,顾笑曰:“此等物事,不直下手插打得,亦学作贼!我不汝杀,杀嫌辱我。”悉纵之逸去。某大惊,问:“何自能尔?”则妾父故枪棒师,妾尽传其术,殆不啻百人敌也。妻尤骇甚,悔向之迷于物色,由是善颜视妾,妾终无纤毫失礼。邻妇或谓妾:“嫂击贼若豚犬,顾奈何俯首受挞楚?”妾曰:“是吾分耳,他何敢言。”闻者益贤之。

异史氏曰:身怀绝技,居数年而人莫之知,而卒之捍患御灾,化鹰为鸠。呜呼!射雉既获,内人展笑;握槊方胜,贵主同车。技之不可以已也如是夫!

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