With one hand around her waist and other other around her nape, he left her no room for retreat. All his love, feelings, and sorrow were embodied in his kiss.
Tightly held within Ji Feng Li’s embrace, Hua Zhu Yu could feel his lips brushing against hers, tenderly with passion. Within her chest, her heart raced avidly as if wanting to break free.
He held her closer and savoured her lips without reservation. Her whole body grew limp as if she was floating in a world painted with vivid colors.
She thought that if she didn’t push him away he seemed intent on kissing her forever until the end of time.
But Hua Zhu Yu pushed him away.
As she was immersed in his kiss, she suddenly recalled her unborn child. In that moment, it seemed like there was a thorn piercing her chest, making it hard for her to even breathe. In that instant, as if struck by lightning, her face instantly paled and she abruptly pushed him away.
Hua Zhu Yu looked up and met his deep, dark eyes. Those eyes were dark as an endless night, with an enchanting force pulling her in. Those eyes stared at her unblinking, making her feel loss within its darkness.
translations at peachblossomgrove . com
It was these eyes that once robbed her heart, once contained her joys and sorrows. Yet today, these eyes radiated with a clear, gentle luster as flowing water, gazing at her intently…
He stared at her, his eyes intoxicated with passion, hazy as an illusion. Hua Zhu Yu’s lips moved, there were many things she wanted to say but she didn’t know where to start.
A sudden sadness gripped her.
The distance between them wasn’t just separated by the unborn child.
When she was a loyal official of Southern Kingdom, he was a traitor. Yet now things were reversed. He became a descendent of the Imperial Family, in the future he was to be Emperor. On the other hand, she became the daughter of a rebellious official, the previous ruling nation’s last surviving members.
What stood between them was also their different nationalities.
A light wind blew in from the door and stirred her skirt. It quivered softly in unison with her complicated feelings. She lowered her lashes, masking the emotions in her eyes as she slowly took a step back. With a faint smile she said, “Prince’s wounds have healed, I still have matters to attend to, I shall withdraw.”
The intoxication in Ji Feng Li’s gaze suddenly dissipated. Mingled with pain and grief, his piercing gaze was so intense she could barely breathe.
Their eyes remained fixed on one another. Hua Zhu Yu could see her reflection in his eyes very clearly. She knew that in this moment, in her eyes there was only his reflection as well.
But, so what?
Between them, there was far too much separating them.
“Bao’er, don’t go.” Ji Feng Li tightly grabbed her hand. The wind entered from outside the courtyard, carrying with it the scent of spring as it infused with her hair.
“For what should I stay? Ji Feng Li, didn’t you say you would forget me forever?” Hua Zhu Yu asked. She resented him, resented that he faked his death and left her in the dark. But what if she knew? She was still his enemy.
She tried to struggle free but Ji Feng Li did not relent. This was the first time he had held her hand. Her hand was slender and soft; although there were calluses on her palm, there was no doubt that it was the hand of a woman.
“How could I forget you, Bao’er.” He pulled her closer to his chest and looked down at her. Fervent with emotions, his gaze locked firmly onto hers, making it hard for her to breathe.
Time seemingly stopped. His dark, burning eyes slowly transformed into a red strand that henceforth entangled(t/n not really sure what this means). It’s just….
The last time they met, she and him, one was the presiding official, the other was the prisoner, enemies with the mindset of one lived while the other died. Today, she was the daughter of a traitor, while he was the regent. It seems they always stood on opposite sides in a constant struggle.
She pushed him away again and quickly tried to leave.
Ji Feng Li employed his lightness skill and stopped in front of her, tightly holding her wrist. “Bao’er, I won’t let you leave, even if I die, I won’t! Don’t think about leaving, don’t even dream about it…” His voice, unusually low and quiet was difficult to resist.
Hua Zhu Yu coldly asked, “Why can’t I leave? What am I to you Ji Feng Li? Don’t forget that I’m your enemy, it was like that in the past, and it’s still like that now. Yet you still want me to stay?”
Ji Feng Li lowered his head and looked at Hua Zhu Yu. His eyes softened as he said, “So what if you’re my enemy? Even when you were a male it didn’t matter.”
No matter who she was, he still loved her, loved only her alone. Like a moth drawn to a flame, even if death was his fate, he did not falter.
Hua Zhu Yu’s heart throbbed. She feared that if she hesitated any longer her resolve would falter and she would stay. She abruptly withdrew the sword hanging at her waist side. The sword flashed with a cold glint in the sky, a bone chilling coldness.
“Ji Feng Li, if you want to keep me here, fine, you have to defeat me first. If not, you must let me leave.” She stated word for word clearly. With every word, the pain in her heart deepened.
“Alright!” Ji Feng Li agreed without hesitation. He did not need a sword and instead broke off a branch from a nearby willow tree. The willow branch was light and nimble in his hand.
Hua Zhu Yu pursed her lips and with a wave of her jade hand, her sword aimed straight towards Ji Feng Li.
Ji Feng Li wielded the willow branch in his hand and fought with Hua Zhu Yu.
The two of them engaged in a battle in the middle of the courtyard.
But this kind of battle made Hua Zhu Yu feel as though her hands and feet were bound.
Ji Feng Li used a willow branch while she held a sword. So she did not dare to fight with all her strength, in fear of accidentally stabbing him. She even suspected that he had anticipated this and had deliberately used a willow branch to fight against her.
Seeing through Ji Feng Li’s motives, Hua Zhu Yu decided to cut the willow branch in his hand but unexpectedly Ji Feng Li pulled out a fan from his sleeve to defend against her attack while the willow branch in his other hand took advantage of the situation and attacked her bun, pulling the hairpin off her head.
The sword in Hua Zhu Yu’s hand was pointed at his chest but it was still half a step slower than the willow branch in his hand.
“Bao’er, I won!” Ji Feng Li held jade hairpin. A radiant smile bloomed across his pale face like a lotus flower, overshadowing even the blazing setting sun at this moment.
Hua Zhu Yu forced a smile and said, “Ji Feng Li, why must you do this. Even if you defeat me, can you catch me?” She knew that based on his current abilities he could not catch her if she fled.
She had yet to finish speaking when she heard him start coughing violently. His body shook with each cough and he had to support himself against the tree trunk. His complexion was exceedingly pale.
Hua Zhu Yu was extremely frightened.
How could she forget his meridians were injured? She had even forced him to use his internal strength. Did his meridian suffer further injury? She rushed to his side in a panic. “Ji Feng Li, are you alright?” She held his wrist trying to take his pulse.
But Ji Feng Li took advantage of the opportunity and pulled her into his arms in a secure hold, not giving her any room for retreat. His heavy breath once again enveloped her.
She wanted to push him away but was instead held even tighter, so tight she couldn’t breathe.
Across the layers of clothing, she could hear his heartbeat clearly, strong and fast. Her face was so close to his chest that all she saw was darkness and nothing else. Her heart suddenly burst with pain and the sour feeling rushed to her nose. This feeling of being protected, this feeling of warmth as she was held in his embrace, she really wished she could stay just a little longer.
But can she? How long can she actually stay here?
“Bao’er, don’t go!” He implored as he continued to cough and pant.
No matter how much she struggled she could not escape his hold. No matter how much her heart ached, she could not overcome his desperation. She could only let him hold her as tears welled in the corner of her eyes, falling down her face, entering her heart.
The world was dangerous as a game of chess and life was short. There was no need for her to worry so much.
If the gods were intent on making them enemies, she wanted even more to be the person by his side.
“You are the regent, and I, do you know my identity?” She asked very softly.
“I don’t care about your identity,” Ji Feng Li said in a hoarse voice.
“Then I’ll stay,” Hua Zhu Yu replied faintly.
Ji Feng Li suddenly let go and looked down at her in a trance. He was astonished but was incredibly overcome with joy. He held her hand and carefully lifted them to his lips.
Hua Zhu Yu looked up at him intently and did not want to blink even though her eyes were hurt. She wanted to etch his face in her mind and deep in her soul.
They gazed deeply at one another and the surrounding world seemed to draw away. It seemed as if they were the only ones left on this earth. However, they were not alone. Behind them a sudden deliberate low cough sounded.
Hua Zhu Yu’s face flushed and she directed her gaze to see Lan Bing quietly standing under the tree not far away.
Ji Feng Li frowned and his eyes flashed with an icy chill. “You better have something urgent!”
“The investigation Prince had ordered this subordinate to conduct has been completed.” Lan Bing quietly replied as his eyes flickered lightly towards Hua Zhu Yu, flashing with an indescribably light.
“Then I shall withdraw first,” Hua Zhu Yu faintly said as she turned and headed for the side hall. Behind her, she could sense his deep gaze on her back.