Monday, 14 July 2008

from "strange stories from a chinese studio"

Trans. Herbert A. Giles.

"This respected friend of mine is the same to me as a brother. Try, sister, to cure him." Miss Chiao-no immediately dismissed her blushes, and rolling up her long sleeves approached the bed to feel his pulse [...] As she was grasping his wrist, K'ung became conscious of a perfume more delicate than that of the epidendrum ; and then she laughed, saying, "This illness was to be expected ; for the heart is touched. Though it is severe, a cure can be effected ; but, as there is already a swelling, not without using the knife." Then she drew from her arm a gold bracelet which she pressed down upon the suffering spot, until by degrees the swelling rose within the bracelet and overtopped it by an inch and more, the outlying parts that were inflamed also passing under, and thus very considerably reducing the extent of the tumour. With one hand she opened her robe and took out a knife with an edge as keen as paper, and pressing the bracelet down all the time with the other, proceeded to cut lightly round near the root of the swelling. The dark blood gushed forth, and stained the bed and the mat; but Mr. K'ung was delighted to be near such a beauty, not only felt no pain, but would willingly have continued the operation that she might sit by him a little longer.

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