Late in the night, the wind was cold and chilling. Moonlight poured down on the arched eaves of the Nine Palaces, casting numerous shadows down below upon the grounds of the Imperial Garden.
Ji Feng Li leisurely proceeded along the path through the garden along with Na Lan Xue and his maidservant, heading towards Huangfu Wu Shuang’s palace.
“Audacious! Who dares to come cause trouble here!” a group of Yu Lin imperial guards had surrounded them, their swords glinting in the cold moonlight.
Next to Ji Feng Li, the maidservant held up a token and said in a delicate voice, “The Emperor is wounded. Our prince came to bring him a detoxification antidote. This is the token that the Emperor gave our prince, quickly let our prince through. Our prince is not one with patience!”
The leader of the group of guards glanced at the token and recognized the mask Ji Feng Li was wearing. He then motioned for the guards to collect their swords and said, “So it turns out to be prince Na Lan. I’ve made an offense. However, why didn’t a eunuch take you there?”
The maidservant angrily replied, “Just now, a gong gong was leading the way but Imperial Consort Wan called him away. It seemed like there was something urgent he had to handle so he told us to find our own way there. However, we’ve been walking and can’t seem to find the way. Fortunately, we were lucky enough to meet you elder brother. May I ask, which direction is the Emperor’s palace?”
“Go along this road, turn left and then you’ll arrive,” the head of the guard said and waved his hand.
“Many thanks!” The maidservant threw him a wink then continued to follow Ji Feng Li as they walked away.
Moments later, they arrived at the gate of the Huangfu Wu Shuang’s palace. Red lanterns were decorated throughout the place, illuminating the great palace hall in a red glow.
Ji Feng Li slowly walked up the steps where Jixiang and several eunuchs on night duty arrived to greet him with a smile. “Prince Na Lan, it is the middle of the night, for what matters have you arrived?”
Ji Feng Li faintly smiled and replied, “The Emperor was poisoned. This prince was worried so this prince came to bring him a special detoxification antidote made from our Yue Zhi nation. This prince came to deliver this antidote. I hope gong gong can go inside and announce my arrival.”
Jixiang raised his horsetail whisk and slowly said in a sharp voice, “”Many thanks to prince’s good intentions. But the Emperor’s poison has been resolved and he’s retired for the night. Moreover tonight is the Emperor and Empress’ wedding night. How about prince Na Lan leave the antidote here with this servant and tomorrow this servant shall present it to the Emperor?”
Upon hearing those words, Ji Feng Li’s fingers grew cold. In that moment, he felt as though he was struck by lightning. His heart seemed empty and his mind momentarily blanked. It took him a moment before he understood the meaning behind “wedding night.” Anguish rushed through his heart, making it hard for him to breathe as if he was on the verge of death. It appears she was far more important to him that he had imagined.
“Wedding night? Is the Empress not Northern Kingdom’s princess? Obviously the Empress is still in Kang Ning Hall with the Northern Emperor. So how can she share a wedding night with the Emperor?” the maidservant behind Ji Feng Li inquired.
Jixiang narrowed his eyes and said, ” You must be unaware. Princess Zhuo Ya was merely jesting. She’s not the true Empress.” He paused for a moment and continued, “In short, tomorrow the Emperor will make a decree to clarify everything. Everyone will understand then. It is late, prince Na Lan should quickly retire. The banquet has ended and the Imperial Palace gates will be closed soon. “
The corners of Ji Feng Li’s lips lifted in a smile that reached his eyes. It was a majestic smile but there was a hidden fury within the depths of those eyes. However, due to the graceful manner in which he carried himself, it was difficult for others to notice his anger.
“Jixiang gong gong is right. Since it’s the Emperor’s wedding night, this prince shall not disturb. I have to bother Jixiang gong gong to give this to the Emperor tomorrow. ” Ji Feng Li slowly said then nodded slightly towards Na Lan Xue and his maidservant.
translations at peachblossomgrove . com
Na Lan Xue’s expression changed slightly and he looked towards the sky in the northwest for a moment. He looked at Ji Feng Li again and secretly sighed before taking a bottle out from his sleeve. “Please take this gong gong.”
A little eunuch stepped forward to retrieve it and suddenly Na Lan Xue lifted his hand and a mist of white powder clouded everyone’s eyes. Jixiang and several eunuchs widened their eyes in shock but all they saw were several silhouettes striding past them to enter the palace. Their minds gradually became blurry and they remained standing there in a daze with a silly smile on their lips.
Na Lan Xue coldly glanced at the group of eunuchs standing their in a daze and exclaimed, “ The Tang family’s drugs are truly potent!”
Inside the palace, a faint candlelight illuminated the room. Through the red canopy above the bed, two figures lying within could faintly be seen.
Hua Zhu Yu had just given Huangfu Wu Shuang another kick and he had fallen to the side of the bed. But when she looked over at him and saw his fervent gaze on her, she looked down and realized that her clothes had been torn, exposing her fair shoulder and delicate collarbone.
Hua Zhu Yu quickly shielded her shoulders with her hands, but in doing so, her chest became more accentuated. She quickly reached for the red canopy and tore off a piece of cloth to wrap herself around it. She then got off the bed barefoot and intended to head towards the wardrobe. As his personal eunuch, she was very familiar with the layout of his room. She was just about to open up the wardrobe and take one of his robes to wear when a gust of wind blew in from an unknown direction, stirring her thin clothes, enveloping her body in a frosty air.
Seemingly, the air was enshrouded in a palpable tension, taut as a pulled string.
Hua Zhu Yu was startled and abruptly turned around to take a look.
Outside the window, the deepness of the night could be seen. The skies were dark save for the faint sprinkles of starlight.
Outside the door, standing amidst the vibrant red decorations of the hall and the shadows of the night, a tall, upright figure was faintly obscured.
Startled, Hua Zhu Yu no longer intended to look through the wardrobe for a set of clothes and instead pulled off the rest of the red canopy and wrapped herself around it tightly.
“Who’s there?” Hua Zhu Yu coldly questioned as her brows knitted. Outside Huangfu Wu Shuang’s room, there were many eunuchs and palace attendants. How could this man come in without any announcement?
Huangfu Wu Shuang was also alert. Upon hearing her question, he instantly sat up and got off the bed.
Entering through the window, the night wind stirred the thin silk curtains. The new arrival stood near the door and his clothes were also stirred by the wind. He slowly turned around as the candlelight illuminated his exquisite mask.
“Ah! Here I thought it was someone else, turns out it’s actually prince Na Lan. It is the middle of the night, what have you come for?” Huangfu Wu Shuang asked calmly, a faint smile on his lips.
Ji Feng Li chuckled softly and his eyes faintly swept across Hua Zhu Yu as his dark pupils contracted. With a raised brow he replied, “Just to steal the bride!’ His voice held a hint of teasing but his tone was nevertheless bold and resolute.
Huangfu Wu Shuang raised his head and laughed heartily.” I didn’t think that the little prince of Yue Zhi would be so bold to come and steal by bride. Men!” He coldly shouted but no one answered.
Huangfu Wu Shuang’s face suddenly darkened. He suddenly leapt forward and reached for the dragon sword hanging on the wall. Since this person had arrived at his room unannounced, he feared that all his attendants must have already been dealt with. In addition, he did not have his hidden guards here with him since tonight was his wedding night. He had sent them to guard a distance away.
Taking advantage of the moment that Huangfu Wu Shuang reached for the sword, Ji Feng Li rushed over towards Hua Zhu Yu.
Hua Zhu Yu suddenly felt her body enveloped in warmth as a black cape with golden cloud embroidered patterns was placed over her shoulders and a warm body towered over her.
Hua Zhu Yu’s heart suddenly jolted in shock. She looked up at him and met a pair of soul-stirring eyes beneath a pair dark brows. Immediately, her eyes were locked onto his and she couldn’t look away. Within those deep eyes, she could see herself, only herself, as if she was they only one within his gaze.
“You.. what do you want to do?” Hua Zhu Yu slowly asked as she tried to brush off his cape. Strangely, she didn’t sense any hostility from him. But she wasn’t going to allow a stranger to restrain her.
“Protect the Emperor!” Huangfu Wu Shuang’s hidden guards suddenly noticed the precarious situation and came out from a hidden location. A few of the guards went to stand in front of Huangfu Wu Shuang protectively, their swords held up towards Ji Feng Li.
At this moment, muffled sounds from the distant palace gate could be heard as the earth beneath their feet faintly shook.
The smile upon Huangfu Wu Shuang’s lips condensed and his expression darkened.
“Who are you? You’re not the little prince of Yue Zhi! ” Huangfu Wu Shuang said in a callous voice.
Ji Feng Li shot him a cold glance but remained silent as he held Hua Zhu Yu.
“Your Majesty! Someone is leading troops, riding through Yu City! They are fighting with our army in a fierce battle outside the palace gates. We suspect that they’re….the Feng Yun troops!” an armored Yu Lin guard entered and reported, his face drenched in perspiration.
“Feng Yun troops?” Huangfu Wu Shuang quietly repeated as his handsome face suddenly stiffened, his dark eyes flashing with a cold light.
The Feng Yun troops was an army as reputable as the Lei Ting(Thunder Ride) troops. At that time it was in the hands of the former Empress Xie. With her passing, the Feng Yun troops too had disappeared. Little did he expect the Feng Yun troops to make an appearance tonight.
“Who’s leading the troops, do you know?” Huangfu Wu Shuang questioned in a slightly trembling voice.
“It was heard that it’s the Retired Emperor Yan’s deceased crown prince,” the guard in cold sweat stated.
“Who?” Huangfu Wu Shuang asked again.
“Huangfu ….Wu Xiang!”
Everything in italics is the scene that was missing from the Vietnamese translations and is my attempted translation of the Chinese raw with the help of google and Baidu translation.
In addition, it seems like the majority of readers wanted me to translate Love in Another Life, My Gentle Tyrant. I’m currently reading it right now. I’m on chapter 254 out of 516. And I really like it so far. I’ll finish reading and then I’ll come to a decision but for right now that’s what I leaning towards for the next novel to translate.