Extra release to celebrate Labor Day! No work which means more time to rest and translate! Enjoy!
“Your Highness, compared to other palace punishments, it’s of course a lot lighter. Why did this servant smile, because only by smiling will this servant feel a bit better.” Hua Zhu Yu calmly replied.
Although she proclaimed herself a servant and her tone was very humble, from her lips such words sounded quite comfortable and at ease.
Huangfu Wu Shuang was a little shaken, thinking he had destroyed such a peerless man he felt it was quite a shame.
“This prince has turned you into a waste. You actually hate this prince and want to kill me don’t you?” he furrowed his brows and asked.
“This servant doesn’t dare!” Hua Zhu Yu raised her head and said frankly, “This servant was just a person in the jianghu1 with no mother or father. The world is large but there is no place to stay, if not for Your Highness, perhaps this servant still has to go to Tuy Tien to earn a living. Today this servant could meet Your Highness and enter the palace is a true blessing from three generations of ancestors. It is heavens will to have this servant stay by Your Highness’ side. Though this servant does not have any great merits, this servant still have some skills. If this servant can assist Your Highness, even if this servant has to suffer it is worthwhile.”
“Oh.” Huangfu Wu Shuang’s pair of eyes became deeper and more obscure.
He also knew that many young students start learning from an early age for many years just so they can have the opportunity to serve the country. If the person in front of him has such a mindset, then isn’t he just the person he’s looking for? Currently, whether in court or jianghu1, there were turbulent waves arising so he naturally needed dependable people.
Consequently, Huangfu Wu Shuang decided to temporarily keep him by his side and see if he had any hidden motives or not.
“Why so longwinded, starting today, you will follow this prince. Speak, what is your name?” Huangfu Wu Shuang lazily asked.
“Now that this servant has become like this, this servant doesn’t dare use this servant’s previous name. Hope Your Highness bestow this servant a name!” Hua Zhu Yu calmly said.
“Alright, from now on you will be called… Yuan Bao.”
Huangfu Wu Shuang smiled and turned around, “Jixiang, escort Xiao Bao Er2 back.”
Xiao Bao Er?
The expression on Hua Zhu Yu’s face suddenly became dark. This name was truly ….. too childlike.
Once Hua Zhu Yu retreated, Huangfu Wu Shuang narrowed his eyes and said to an eunuch, “Go to Tuy Tien and inquire Yuan Bao’s origins.”
“Yes!” the eunuch quickly answered and retreated.
New eunuchs that enter the palace usually go through a strict procedure. Normally, all were young kids around 7-8 years old when they entered. Furthermore their bodies had to be clean(innocent). Once they entered the palace, they followed elder eunuchs to learn the rules and etiquette. Only after four years would they then enter a residence to serve.
An eunuch suddenly appearing like Hua Zhu Yu normally would have to wait till his name was called. But the crown prince had bestowed the name Yuan Bao to Hua Zhu Yu which was also the name of an eunuch that had recently passed away. Fortunately that eunuch had served in Eastern Palace and rarely went out so very few would recognize him.
Since Hua Zhu Yu was going to be serving in Eastern Palace, she resided in a small room north of Eastern Palace.
For the past few days, Huangfu Wu Shuang did not call on her. The other eunuchs also knew she was suffering from her recent castration and punishment and perhaps because everyone was in the same boat, no one gave her a hard time. The young eunuch named Jixiang came by everyday to bring her meals and would also teach her the palace regulations.
Hua Zhu Yu had always been a quick learner and since she was determined she had already memorized all the rules only after a few days.
Though Hua Zhu Yu could never have imagine she would entered the palace with the identity of an eunuch, after the storm had settled, she felt that this identity was quite convenient, it was a lot safer than being a maidservant.
Later on, Jixiang finally spilled the beans on why Huangfu Wu Shuang didn’t want her performing at Tuy Tien.
Apparently, Wen Wan happened to hear her play the qin at Tuy Tien once and was startled. Once Wen Wan came home she would practice her qin skills everyday. Huangfu Wu Shuang admired Wen Wan and would flee the palace everyday to go find her. The crown prince was heart broken after seeing her hands full of injury from practicing the qin all day long. Once he realized the reason was because of a musician from Tuy Tien he was furious and went to go find the musician.
Hua Zhu Yu never could have imagined it because of Wen Wan. Before it was Ji Feng Li, then it was Xiao Yin, and now it’s Huangfu Wu Shuang.
So she couldn’t stand the fact that her qin skills weren’t as great as mine.
Is there still justice in this world?
Just because she was Southern Kingdom’s number one beauty, does she have the right to destroy anyone better than her?
Hua Zhu Yu rested for about 4 -5 days before Jixiang called on her saying that Huangfu Wu Shuang summoned her over to wait on him.
Hua Zhu Yu followed Jixiang into the garden of Eastern Palace and saw from a distance that up ahead was the jade pagoda pavilion where a few maidservants were seen surrounding a figure. A slight breeze blew past carrying with it fragrant scents and voices of laughter.
Hua Zhu Yu lowered her head and followed behind Jixiang. When they were about ten steps away from the pavilion, Jixiang stepped forward to make an announcement as Huangfu Wu Shuang’s voice drifted out.
“Tell him to come in and serve.” Huangfu Wu Shuang commanded. His voice was still in the midst of development so it was a little coarse and not quite pleasing to the ears but still contained some charm.
Hua Zhu Yu hurriedly stepped forward and saw that he was surrounded by maidservants waiting on him. Huangfu Wu Shuang was leisurely lying on a couch with a chessboard in front of him. A maidservant adorned in a pink outfit was standing opposite of him with a white chess piece in hand.
The young maidservant’s chess skills were nothing special so after a few moves she was defeated.
Huangfu Wu Shuang lost interest and yelled, “Scram! You’re punished with no food for the day, withdraw!”
The maidservant knelt on the ground and continuously kowtowed while trembling. “This servant thanks Your Highness.”
To be punished and scolded yet have to appear grateful and kowtow was the life of a servant.
“Gou Fen, come play a round with this prince!” the young maidservant was scared witless as she unnervingly came forward. Out of all the servants here, Gou Fen was the most skilled in chess, but she was still frightened whenever she had to play against the crown prince. If she lost she would be punished, but if she won she still would not escape punishment, especially today, anyone could tell the crown prince was not in a good mood. How could she not be afraid?
Huangfu Wu Shuang eyes swept around and saw Hua Zhu Yu silently standing to the side who was adorned in a red and black eunuch robe. She was wearing the standard eunuch attire but no matter from which angle you look at it, it was very pleasing to the eye. This servant was born with devilishly handsome features, he hasn’t even lifted his head up yet he exuded a genteel and sophisticated air, causing the maidservants to not help but constantly steal glances. He was already an eunuch yet still able to entice flowers (ladies).
Huangfu Wu Shuang always deemed himself handsome but he felt he could not compare to this servant in front of him which annoyed him greatly.
“Yuan Bao, come place the next move after Gou Fen!” Huangfu Wu Shuang didn’t care if Hua Zhu Yu knew how to play chess or not, but she had boasted of her talents and wanted to assist him so if she couldn’t even play chess then he didn’t need such a person.
Hua Zhu Yu sounded in agreement and calmly came forward.
No matter what the master commanded, one had calmly carry out the order. Even if the master orders you to go die, one had to have a smile on one’s face as this was the way of a servant. These were the things that Jixiang had taught her which she took very seriously. Of course, if he ordered her to go die she wouldn’t, but besides dying, she was willing to do everything else.
“Bao Bao-ah, if you win against Guo Fen, you will have to opportunity to play chess with this prince!” Huangfu Wu Shuang sat on his couch and coldly proclaimed.
Actually, he didn’t pay any attention to the game between Hua Zhu Yu and Guo Fen as he was only waiting for Hua Zhu Yu to lose, finding an excuse to punish her and have a little fun.
But the situation was not as he expected. The maidservants continuously giggled as an eunuch raised his voice to announce, “Guo Fen, you have lost.”
- community of martial artists
- ‘Xiao’ means little and ‘Er’ is a pronoun usually added to the end of a name as a term of endearment.
hmm I wonder just how beautiful this Wen Wan is to make everyone so infatuated