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Mr. Tung; Or, Virtue Rewarded.

AT Ch‘ingchow there lived a Mr. Tung, President of one of the Six Boards, whose domestic regulations were so strict that the men and women servants were not allowed to speak to each other. One day he caught a slave girl laughing and talking with one of his attendants, and gave them both a sound rating. That night he retired to sleep, accompanied by his valet-de-chambre, in his library, the door of which, as it was very hot weather, was left wide open. When the night was far advanced, the valet was awaked by a noise at his master’s bed: and, opening his eyes, he saw, by the light of the moon, the attendant abovementioned pass out of the door with something in his hand. Recognizing the man as one of the family, he thought nothing of the occurrence, but turned round and went to sleep again. Soon after, however, he was again aroused by the noise of footsteps tramping heavily across the room, and, looking up, he beheld a huge being with a red face and a long beard, very like the God of War, carrying a man’s head. Horribly frightened, he crawled under the bed, and then he heard sounds above him as of clothes being shaken out, and as if some one was being shampooed. In a few moments, the boots tramped once more across the room and went away; and then he gradually put out his head, and, seeing the dawn beginning to peep through the window, he stretched out his hand to reach his clothes. These he found to be soaked through and through, and, on applying his hand to his nose, he smelt the smell of blood. He now called out loudly to his master, who jumped up at once; and, by the light of a candle, they saw that the bed clothes and pillows were alike steeped in blood. Just then some constables knocked at the door, and when Mr. Tung went out to see who it was, the constables were all astonishment; “for,” said they, “a few minutes ago a man rushed wildly up to our yamên, and said he had killed his master; and, as he himself was covered with blood, he was arrested, and turned out to be a servant of yours. He also declared that he had buried your head alongside the temple of the God of War; and when we went to look, there, indeed, was a freshly dug hole, but the head was gone.” Mr. Tung was amazed at all this story, and, on proceeding to the magistrate’s yamên, he discovered that the man in charge was the attendant whom he had scolded the day before. Thereupon, the criminal was severely bambooed and released; and then Mr. Tung, who was unwilling to make an enemy of a man of this stamp, gave him the girl to wife. However, a few nights afterwards the people who lived next door to the newly married couple heard a terrific crash in their house, and, rushing in to see what was the matter, found that husband and wife, and the bedstead as well, had been cut clean in two as if by a sword. The ways of the God are many, indeed, but few more extraordinary than this.

董公子

青州董尚書可畏,家庭嚴肅,內外男女,不敢通一語。一日,有婢僕調笑於中門之外,公子見而怒叱之,各奔去。及夜,公子偕僮臥齋中。時方盛暑,室門洞敞。更深時,僮聞床上有聲甚厲,驚醒。月影中,見前僕提一物出門去。以其家人故,弗深怪,遂復寐。忽聞靴聲訇然,一偉丈夫赤面修髯,似壽亭侯像,捉一人頭入。僮懼,蛇行入床下。聞床上支支格格,如振衣,如摩腹,移時始罷。靴聲又響,乃去。僮伸頸漸出,見窗櫺上有曉色。以手捫床上,著手沾溼,嗅之血腥。大呼公子,公子方醒。告而火之,血盈枕席。大駭,不知其故。忽有官役叩門。公子出見,役愕然,但言怪事。詰之,告曰:「適衙前一人神色迷罔,大聲曰:『我殺主人矣!』眾見其衣有血污,執而白之官。審知為公子家人。渠言已殺公子,埋首於關廟之側。往驗之,穴土猶新,而首則並無。」公子駭異,趨赴公庭,見其人即前狎婢者也。因述其異。官甚惶惑,重責而釋之。公子不欲結怨於小人,以前婢配之,令去。積數日,其鄰堵者,夜聞僕房中一聲震響若崩裂,急起呼之,不應。排闥入視,見夫婦及寢床,皆截然斷而為兩,木肉上俱有削痕,似一刀所斷者。關公之靈蹟最多,未有奇於此者也。

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