“Hence, in order to counteract the residual yang energy from your use of the saber, you need to dual cultivate preferably with a partner strong in yin energy to soak up the excess yang,” the doctor says after inspecting Nie Mingjue’s meridians.
He really knows he should pay attention to the doctor; he’s been treating Nie Mingjue ever since he was too small to reach his grabby fingers for his father’s blade but what’s presented on his face is a look of incredulousness and a mouth hanging open like a gasping fish. The doctor continues on.
“All that yang and nowhere to go. It’s bound to go into the body and cause havoc,” the doctor continues, not minding of the trepidation spreading in Nie Mingjue’s face.
“Symptoms include a violent temper, ruddy complexion, easily tanned, too much heat in the body, quick to anger, always feeling hungry and a fast pulse. Have you experienced any of these symptoms more frequently, sect leader?” He looks pointedly at the reddening face of the sect head which was quickly being so from the anger.
“Also, with the Qinghe Nie sect’s sword style, I’m afraid you are only harnessing more yang energy, bringing about the symptoms faster and corroding the body’s internal balance. My family has recorded your ancestors’ health for centuries and with the way things are going you will find an early grave before forty.”
“Since I can’t prescribe you to abstain from using your saber I can only recommend an alternative method. Effective and not at all unpleasant.”
"My family has been advising your family for years sect leader Nie so I hope you will listen to my advice.”
“The body loses qi with loss of liquid, semen especially, but the problem is you have too much and not enough qing.
“Therefore, for fast relief this doctor suggests you ejaculate every day and at least twice, one early morning and another before going to bed to spend the excess yang. This is optimal for fast relief however even once every few days would see an improvement in your condition,” the doctor says calmly as if he hadn’t just told Nie Mingjue to go fuck.
Nie Mingjue blushes from the specified dosage. Why is it so much? ! Did the doctor think of him as some breeding stallion of a raunchy novel?
"Sect leader Nie, I advise for you to find a cultivation partner, preferably some with strong yin energy."
The order to dual cultivate as medicine would normally be welcomed by other people but not so by Nie Mingjue.
Nie Mingjue becomes red-faced when he hears the doctors prescription. This is a serious-minded sect! Not a brothel or worse, Lanlingjin sect. He’s almost tempted to say to the doctor he should go Jin Guangshan where his advice would be better and wholly appreciated but bites his tongue.
One does not make an enemy of their doctor. Never. He tried to go against this doctor’s advice once in his youth and went to overtrain. What greeted him afterward was a mountain of pain no thanks to the unpleasant medicine to fix a burnt out spiritual reserve and body.
“Now, didn’t sect leader Jin invite you to one of his many gatherings?”
Gatherings. More like a debauched party of pompous peacocks trying to cover their lewdness with very thin covers of modesty.
“No need.” Nie Mingjue has and always will refuse even before he knew the real going-on behind this farce of ‘poetry readings’ and ‘peony and chrysanthemum viewings’.
“Normally, women are suitable yin cultivation partners as they’re more naturally more predisposed to yin."
"But your intimate friend, through his demonic cultivation, Wei Wuxian has an overabundance of yin.”
“One that might cause him instability in the long run if I may add,” the Nie clan doctor says.
"So, you want me to use another person's body to cover for my own weakness?" Nie Mingjue frowns. He knows, of course, the practice of using human cauldrons to strengthen one’s body. It’s no secret that’s how some of the prisoners end up as in the Sun Palace during and before the war.
“This advice had also worked for your father. It’s also responsible for having brought forth your brother.”
Nie Mingjue sputters. He’s almost sure this doctor is trying to kill him today. He already feels like qi-deviating from this talk.
“And judging from master Wei Wuxian's interaction with you I daresay he is not entirely opposed to the idea.”
"In fact, such a coupling would only be beneficial to him as well. After the opportunity in giving him a diagnosis I can say the yin in his body has become too much for someone who was inherently yang."
"His talent on demonic cultivation but supplies his body with yin which would cause instability in the near future if it hasn't yet."
“As a male, his body should be naturally predisposed to yang but using demonic cultivation disrupts the meridians.”
"Doctor, are you persuading me that dual cultivation is not only for my good but his?" Nie Mingjue frowns.
"Yet, it's not something I take lightly. My father indeed took on another woman but it was only after the death of my mother."
"During the time my mother had been alive since their marriage, my father had always been faithful to her." The Qishanwen sect had a practice of stealing other’s essence, recalls Nie Mingjue. "I will not take the decision to dual cultivate with another lightly."
"I understand. It was only a suggestion," the doctor says.
"However, if the time arises and if you are in need of some tools and ointments I can prepare them. Just ask in advance.”
“For now, if sect leader does not want to dual cultivate I can prescribe cold baths, a diet of slow-moving animals, a diet rich in tofu and soy and to drink cold spring water. Stay away from yang food spices, alcohol, chicken, glutinous sticky rice... I presume sect leader is familiar with them or should I write the full list?”
“No need. The library already has some medical texts.”
“Very well then. I want to add more manuals to your library if ever sect leader chooses to follow my advice.”
When the doctor hands them Nie Mingjue discovers they were picture books, the kind Huaisang reads.
The books hang awkwardly in the doctor’s hands from Nie Mingjue’s refusal to touch them while he mulishly crosses his arms.
The doctor takes back the books when it’s apparent the sect leader won’t accept them and produces another item.
“Or do you perhaps prefer this, sect leader?” The doctor hands out a tied rectangular bundle. The qiankun pouch looks heavy and Nie Mingjue says as the doctor continues to hold them towards him, not willing to let the old man continue on carrying what seems a heavy package.
When Nie Mingjue unties the fabric he instantly regrets accepting it. Upon unwrapping the pouch out came books with such titles as, ‘The Ways of the Chrysanthemums’, ‘Bitten Peach’, and ‘Fiddling the Flute’.
Nie Mingjue flusters from the suggestive titles.
If only this man's family hadn't served as doctors to the Nie clan for generations he would have long thrown baxia at him!
He isn’t sure if he is keen on the idea of pursuing any other relationship.
But his duty as the clan leader dictates him to marry a woman to continue the bloodline.
“Well then, work to your health's content, sect leader,” the doctor encourages and kowtows before leaving, leaving a flustered Nie Mingjue with the longyang picture books.
Nie Mingjue slams the books on the table when the doctor has already left.
He begins recalling the beginning of Wei Wuxian and his relationship.
Nie Mingjue and Wei Wuxian had gotten together during the second half of the campaign, just when it was about to end. Because of the constraints on their time - when the campaign was violently approaching its end - they hadn’t had the luxury of time to explore their relationship.
They had a goal and interest in common which was and the killing off of Wens.
Their beginning had a rough start with Nie Mingjue thinking the boy was -yes, talented, strong and smart - but too nonchalant, arrogant and lacking discipline during most of their acquaintances. It was only a chance incident which made him aware of the boy's other virtues and coupled with their common goal of bringing down the Wens and their relish in killing off the supporters there were moments during the war when they understood each other.
And in spite of the many rumors going around camp and other sects, he and Wei Wuxian still haven’t slept together because Nie Mingjue didn’t believe in premarital relations, seeing it as dishonoring his partner and shaming his ancestors.
And even with Wei Wuxian’s general flirtiness - which had caused much misunderstanding and anger during the beginning of their relationship - it was apparent:
They didn’t know anything much about sex between males.
And so, they only done kissing and the occasional fondling and petting.
But now, he was encouraged to look into pleasure and double cultivation as a means to reign in his excess yang.
Against the doctor’s well-meaning advice (well-meaning? Hah! More like perverted) Nie Mingjue continues on as usual and never touching Wei Wuxian beyond a few moments above the waist which leaders to the other's never ending frustration. Because he was that angered about thinking that another can control his sex life.
It was petty and childish for him, but Nie Mingjue had always been the type to allow only a very few people close to him and dual cultivate was taking another step in their relationship Nie Mingjue wasn’t sure he was wholly ready for.
He did not want to force someone to sleep with him just because Nie Mingjue can not reign in his temper and qi.
However, his decision will just eventually lead him to more frustrations.