James wrote:Awesome. Do you know where the folktale is in written form?
It is from a Chinese book of 3K folktales which Empress Zhang has translated parts of over on the Frontier Forums. The book is called "The Complete Collection of Folklares of the Romance of the Three Kingdoms" and here is the story of Xiao Qiao that she posted there 3 years back:
Killing Zhou Yu
People always say that Zhou Yu had been tricked to death by Zhuge Liang. Actually, Luo Guan Zhong had mistaken. So when we read the book, we are misleaded as well. In fact, Zhou Yu had only been sick, his death is caused by his wife, Xiao Qiao.
Speaking of xiao Qiao, her beauty is no less than Diao Chan yet her morals are worse. She never care about politics and the important matters Zhou Yu have to deal with all day. After she is married to Zhou Yu, she can eat whatever she want, dress in the best cloth, have carriage whenever she went out, and bunch of servents. However, even though her life is comfortable, Xiao Qiao is not happy. this is because Zhou Yu have to be in charge of so many important matters each day, that he barely have time for his wife. Even though he always bring Xiao Qiao with him when he is on a campaign, but most of the time he just leave she along in the tent while worrying about battles from morning to night. Xiao Qiao could not stand the loneliness, so she usually went to Zhou Yu's camp and drag him back.
One time, Zhou Yu and his generals are discussing a very important matter, so he did not go back to his tent for three nights in a row. Xiao Qiao went outside and played a very sexy song. Now Zhou Yu get angry finally. He send Xiao Qiao back to Zheng Jiang with her sister, Da Qiao, to live with Wu Guo Tai.
After returning to Zheng Jiang, Xiao Qiao could not bear the loneliness anymore. So she get together with Zhou Yun, who is a servent of Zhou Yu. Speaking of Zhou Yun, his grandfather, his father have served the grandfather and father of zhou yu. Zhou Yun is about the same age as Zhou Yu and is pretty handsome as well. Yet instead of possessing the ability Zhou Yu had, his mind with filled with wacky stuff. Plus a sharp eye that can tell what people want, he got the trust of Zhou Yu, who send him back to Zheng Jiang along with Xiao Qiao to take care of personal businesses. Now Zhou Yun is like in heaven. Everytime he saw Xiao Qiao, he wants to have her. But with Zhou Yu there, there is just no opportunity. Now it is just him and Xiao Qiao, to Zhou Yun, it is like the perfect opportunity. Therefore, he went to Xiao Qiao's room everyday and trying to make her agree, Xiao Qiao, who get lonely, is thrilled with this opportunity. So everyday they get together.
After the battle of Chibi, Zhou Yu got tricked by Zhuge Liang and feel ill. Sun Quan, worried about zhou yu's body, send Xiao Qiao to Chai Sang to care for Zhou Yu. Zhou Yun, as Xiao Qiao's servent, came along with her.
Ever since Xiao Qiao get together with Zhou Yun, she did not care much about Zhou Yu anymore. When she arrived to Chai Sang, she have a headache each time she saw her "husband". Since too many people came to see zhou yu, Xiao Qiao could not get to Zhou Yun three days in a row. On the fourth night, after Zhou Yu had gone into sleep, she went to Zhou Yun's room and cried, "Honey Yun, I am going to go crazy if you are not by my side. Who knows when Zhou Yu is going to die. If he did not die in one year, that means I have to serve him for an entire year, yet I could not each manage a day! What should I do?"
Zhou Yun replied, "Oh, my beauty, what do you want me to do?"
Xiao Qiao said, "He is about to die anyway, if we put some poison in his medicine, then he will go to heaven sooner."
zhou yun, blinking his eyes, and thought, "It can't be done. You brother-in-law (meaning Sun Quan, whose brother married to Xiao Qiao's sister) and Lu Su all care about Zhou Yu very much, and they come at least three times a day to see him. Plus Zhou Yu is getting better. If he suddenly died. They will be suspicious and if they researched his death, there is no way we can get out of it.
Xiao Qiao shouted, "then you want me to stay with Zhou Yu and never come back?"
Zhou Yun covered up her mouth, "shhhh..Don't be too loud or you might get heard." "Of course I want you" seeing the angry look on Xiao Qiao's face, he quickly added, "I have a plan that can kill two bird with one stone, listen closely.." Zhou Yun told her the entire plan, which Xiao Qiao agreed happily.
The next day, after Xiao Qiao served Zhou Yu his medicine, obeying Zhou Yun's order, she said to Zhou Yu affectionaly, "My dear husband. Sawing you sick, I can't eat during mealtime and can't go into sleep at night. I wish to transfer your sickness onto mine and let me suffer instead. In order to make you recover early, I think hard day and night and finally came up with a scheme and maybe can get rid of your disease."
Knowing ther is way to recover, Zhou Yu sit up immediatly and grabbed Xiao Qiao's hand, "My lady, I thank you for your deep love. You really came up with a scheme, tell me about it."
Xiao Qiao hesitated on purpose, shaking her head, she said, "This scheme...you have to..."
"My lady!", Zhou Yu replied, "If it can really cure my disease. I am willing to do anything, will tell me about the scheme."
"If you can suffer a little bit, then I will say it," looking at zhou yu, xiao qiao said with solemnity, "The reason you fell ill is because of that crafty Zhuge Liang. Why don't my husband pretend to be died, and put up a mourning place inside the army. Then we can send this information to Zhuge Liang. If he knew you are died, he will definitely come andd mourn you. We can ambush some swordsman inside the around, when Zhuge Liang came here. With just one little signal, he will be died even if he had ten lives. With Kongming killed, you will feel happy and cured your illness."
"hmmm..." Zhou Yu pondered, "It is such an important matter, I need to discuss it with my lord and Lu Su."
When Sun Quan and Lu Su came, zhou Yu told them the scheme Xiao Qiao came up with. Sun Quan had no objection. Lu Su, because he is the friend of Kongming's older brother, Zhuge Jin, did not want to kill him. Therefore he said, "If we put an empty coffin, Zhuge Liang would know the truth by looking at the stars. If Gong Jin really sleep in it, he will be running out of air to breathe."
Xiao Qiao replied, "This you don't have to worry, we can put some holes on the top of the coffin for my husband to breathe.
Seeing Lu Su still want to argue, she added angrily, "Sir, you don't want my husband to recovery, is it because you want him to die so you can take his position as the commander-in-cheif?"
"What..." honest Lu Su got red by xiao Qiao's inquires, and stoped saying anything.
Sun Quan, saw Lu Su's embrassment, said quickly, "Sister, Zi Jing meant no harm, you don't have to get mad."
"How about this," Xiao Qiao said, "Since my lord and Mr. Lu are afraid to offend Kongming, then you both leave. I will stay here and perform this scheme by myself. If Liu Bei attack Wu for this, you can just hand me over and push all the blame on me, who let me be the wife of Zhou Yu?"
With her harsh words, Sun Quan and Lu Su have no choice but to accept. After they left, Xiao qiao ordered to put together a mourning place and ambushed about two hundred swordsman. Just when darkness had come, Xiao Qiao said to Zhou Yu, "My dear husband, I am sorry but you have to sleep in the coffin today. If not, Zhuge Liang will knew the truth by looking at the stars, then we wasted all our time and efforts for nothing."
Having no choice, Zhou Yu get inside the coffin. After Xiao Qiao put the top in place, she ordered to nail the four corners. Zhou Yu, sensing this, said inside the coffin, "My lady, why did you nail the coffin?"
"I have no choice but to," Xiao Qiao replied, "Kongming is a very crafty people, what if he saw throught our scheme?" Listening this, even though Zhou Yu is not happy, he have to say Xiao Qiao have her reasons.
Meanwhile, Zhuge Liang knew about Zhou Yu's death, yet he refuse to believe it. However, when he is viewing the stars at night, he discovered Zhou Yu's star at the east disappeared, then he finally acknowlege that Zhou Yu is really dead. Therefore, he prepared the gifts and bring zhao Yun with him to mourn Zhou Yu early next morning. When he entered the mourning place, he lay down the gift and cried on top of Zhou Yu's coffin.
Xiao Qiao, on the other hand, is still in Zhou Yun's room and did not get up yet. Last night, after she prepared for everything, they dressed up like a bride and went to Zhou Yun's room. When she knew Zhuge Liang is here already from her servant, she sweated with surprised. The more Xiao Qiao is scared, the more she is unorganized. Without even washing away her make-up and took off the red dress, she put on the mourning cloth and run to the camp.
When she set her foot inside the door, she had seen Zhuge Liang is crying on the coffin, so she run to the coffin and "cried" with Kongming.
Kongming's mourning is out of his heart. Even though Zhou Yu want to kill him several time, he is still admired by Zhou Yu's talent and abilities, think about after the ally of Sun and Liu, Cao Cao never dare to attack them easily, plus the fact that he have some responsibility of his death. Zhuge Liang cried harder.
Xiao Qiao's cry is like a rat crying a cat-sad in face yet smiling in heart. While she pretend to be sad, she took out the wax that she prepared before and use it cover up the breathing hole on the coffin.
Zhuge Liang, getting so tried from crying, raised his head and want to rest a second. But instead, he saw Xiao Qiao is put wax on the coffin, and thought, "something is fishy". He look at Xiao Qiao more closely, and saw her face is covered with make-up and she did not have any tear at all, or all the make-up will be washed away. Then he look down and get more clear, when Xiao Qiao heard Zhuge Liang is coming, she forget to put on mourning shoes, the shoes she is wearing is red with lots of flower.
Zhou Yu, lying inside the coffin, feel his chest is stuffed up since the breathing hole is covered with wax. Therefore, he is moving around. Zhuge liang, who is resting against the coffin, feel there is movement inside, now he finally understand, "Zhou Yu did not die, it is Xiao Qiao who just killed him!"
Kongming thought, "why would Xiao Qiao kill her own husband, that is none of my business, but why would she trick me here, it is obvious that she want to put the responsibility on me. If I don't think of something, probably I won't walk out this camp alive!"
Xiao Qiao feel the coffin stopped moving after a while, she knew Zhou Yu is dead. So she want to leave and give the order to kill Zhuge Liang.
However, when Xiao Qiao raised her feet, she could not move at all. It is because Zhuge Liang steped on her belts. Xiao Qiao is about to get upset and yell, yet stopped instantly when Kongming begin to spoke, "Madam Qiao, you killed your husband with your own hand and want to push the blame on me, how evil are you! I don't care why don't want Gong Jin died, i could keep your secret, I could even took the blame on gong jin's death. Under one circumstances, you have to wait until I leave. If you said 'no', I will let you die with me. The wax on your hand, the make-up on your face, and the red shoe on your feet are evidences that you killed Zhou Yu. Also, don't think this is your camp. Zhao Yun, the hero at Changban, is standing outside, Cao Cao's million army is scared of his name, why should we afraid of your couple hundred swordsman?" After saying those, Kongming walked out quickly and signaled Zhao Yun to follow, they went straight to the shore.
Zhou Yun, who is staying outside the camp, saw Zhuge Liang leave. Wondering they Xiao Qiao did not signal to kill him, he quicked walked inside. When he saw Xiao Qiao standing against Zhou Yu's coffin, with her face as white as a paper, knew Kongming saw throught their scheme. So he quicked ordered, "Pursue Zhuge liang and kill him" But it is too late, when the troop reached the shore, Zhuge Liang's boat is long gone.
Since it already happened, and Zhou Yu is died anyway and Zhuge Liang has gone back to jingzhou. Xiao Qiao lied to Sun Quan and Lu Su that Kongming saw through the scheme and killed Zhou Yu by using wax to cover up the hole.
There is no way Sun Quan and Lu Su even dream that Xiao Qiao would kill her own husband, they believed her of course. When Luo Guan Zhong write the RTK, he did no know whose detail, and thus, make a mistake in his writing.