Wukong was born from a stone pillar of an ancient tower. The power of elements filled his body, and transformed him into a stone monkey. He, who had the ability of Unbreakable Body, once lived with a group of wild monkeys in the mountains. Years later, the Dragon King flooded the earth, so Wukong decided to leave the mountain to pursue immortality and punish the Dragon King. His actions in the mortal world earned him a great reputation. However, he was not aware that the deaths of his monkey friends had gradually bred loneliness inside his heart. By absorbing the power of elements, his loneliness transformed into another stone monkey stone monkey with an appearance identical to Wukong. It named itself Six Eared Macaque.
Six Eared Macaque lived with the wild monkeys in the mountain ever since it was born. It treated those monkeys as friends. Sometimes they would climb fruit trees together. Sometimes they would drink water from the stream. They lived happy and carefree lives. They spent many years together, and now the wild monkeys had all aged. ‘Hurry, come and have fun together! I found bunches of nice mature berries in the piedmont!’ Six Eared Macaque exclaimed, but the monkeys did not bother. They lay out in the sun and replied lazily, ‘We are as old as the hills…...How could we climb tall trees?’ Six Eared Macaque tried to pull them on their feet, but they just would not move an inch. Six Eared Macaque went to the piedmont alone.
When Six Eared Macaque brought fruits back home, the monkeys remained silent no matter how loud it yelled at them. Six Eared Macaque buried its old friends with tears in its eyes, and left the mountain to set off on a journey to look for ‘friends’ who could accompany him forever.
It walked through cities large and small to search for ‘friends’ to no avail. Sometimes people deemed it a monkey demon and tried to hunt it down. Later it set foot in a village where the people worshipped it as ‘the Great Sage’, who saved the village from demons long ago.
‘The Great Sage? Why are you all calling me that?’
‘The Great Sage must have forgotten about your kind deeds. The village could not have survived without your help. You took our breath away taking all those attacks unharmed!’
‘This guy they called the Great Sage is so strong that he is invulnerable…...It sounds like he is the only one worthy of becoming my friend.’
Six Eared Macaque gathered information about the Great Sage from the passionate villagers without blowing its cover. It heard that the name was Wukong, who was also born from from a stone, and had an immortal life and the ability of Unbreakable Body.. The more it knew about Wukong, the more it believed he was the only one who could be its friend. It rested in the village for a while before continuing its journey. It could not wait to find Wukong.
Six Eared Macaque followed the hints it had collected to a rocky shore. It saw a monkey similar to itself protecting a human in his back from youkais. The monkey, who had the upper hand, jibed, ‘Humph! Is that all you got?’ The enraged youkais flew at the monkey all at once! To their surprise, the monkey simply took their attacks without dodging or blocking. Six Eared Macaque gasped at the scene. However, the monkey roared and blew the youkais away. The monkey, without a scratch, walked towards the youkais and sneered, ‘This is not even enough for a warm up! Get lost, all of you!’
The youkais all ran away. Six Eared Macaque stood in front of the monkey and asked, ‘Are you Wukong?’ The monkey eyed Six Eared Macaque and replied ‘......Yea, what’s the matter?’ ‘Yes! I found you, finally!’ Six Eared Macaque jumped around in excitement and grabbed Wukong’s hand. It said, ‘You are my “friend”. Come with me!’ To its surprise, Wukong pulled his hands away instantly. ‘I don’t know you. What brought you here, evildoer?’ questioned Wukong in disgust and suspicion. ‘Evildoer? No, I’m not! I’m just looking for a ‘friend’!’ ‘Funny! You are looking at the wrong guy. Master, we should go.’ Wukong was about to leave with the human, ignoring Six Eared Macaque.
Six Eared Macaque glared at the human. It believed if it took the human’s life, Wukong would be its friend……’I’m the only one who can be Wukong’s friend!’ Six Eared Macaque furiously jumped at the human, only to be blocked by Wukong. Six Eared Macaque felt pain under the ribs as Wukong pounded its stomach, throwing Six Eared Macaque onto a stone wall. ‘‘You…...Why……?’ it bawled and stared at Wukong. A friend was all it longed for. When it finally found Wukong, he denied it in disgust. ‘No one can hurt Master!’ Wukong flew at Six Eared Macaque to deal a death blow, but the human stopped him.
The human stepped to Six Eared Macaque, and smiled, ‘Do you know what a friend means?’ ‘Whoever stays with me is a friend.’ ‘Then why do you long for a friend?’ ‘......I don't want to be lonely’ The human’s speech evoked Six Eared Macaque’s pleasant memories of living with the wild monkeys in the past. It realized it had never been alone after all, because it misinterpreted the true meaning of ‘friends’.
‘True friends will live in my heart forever.’ Six Eared Macaque said. It gradually transformed into dots of purple light, drifting into Wukong’s body. Wukong closed his eyes to experience what it had experienced. Tears gushed from his eyes, and he murmured, ‘You are no longer alone.’ He smiled. After so many years, he could finally embrace his loneliness to complete himself.