Towards that one trip to Mount Qi Yun seven years ago, I cannot say I have no memory of it whatsoever, but to tell the truth, to say I have a clear memory of it, is also not right. The only thing I had kept in mind, is that on that day, I found out Yuwen Xiu is not Yuwen Xiu, perhaps because this matter has been so deeply imprinted into me, that I had unknowingly neglected everything else.
But with the connection made today, I now remember, that day I had also met two interesting boys, one is the frail and green vegetable, one is the bad tempered blind kid. To me, that day was just a normal day, just like every other day and night I had experienced. But I didn’t think that many years later, I would actually run into someone I fatefully encountered once before, and that person has already grown into a big and tall, handsome man, completely different from the short and stubborn blind kid in my memory!
Oh no, perhaps there are some things that haven’t changed, for example, that impulsiveness, for example, that dominance, for example, that directness.
I take a moment to think about He Lian Chen, after growing up, the first time I met him was in Yun Mi Imperial Palace, he had come to Yun Mi disguised as an envoy, cahooting with Yun Ze to oppose Yun Mi. At that time, I had only thought that this envoy’s sharp eyes is not something that belongs to any ordinary person, and only with Yuwen Rui’s revelation later, did I come to know that he is Yun Zhan’s emperor. Then right after that, I was captured to Yun Zhan by him, becoming his personal eunuch, getting picked on and ordered all over the place by him, then after the ‘head smashing situation’, I finally gained my human rights.
I recall that several days ago, he asked me whether I went to Mount Qi Yun seven years ago, connecting that to what he said just now, ‘you really haven’t changed from the past at all’, oh-ho, dare I ask, has this guy long confirmed I am the Ah-Dou he met that year?
Thinking up to here, I cannot hold back from laughing, at that time, I had casually made up the words, ‘a palace maid under the Yun Mi Kingdom’s thirteenth prince’, perhaps that had caused him to waste a lot of effort. Turns out I had already played a good old prank on him when I was younger, truly makes me satisfied ah!
But back then, He Lian Chen’s eyesight was a blur, only able to vaguely see a figure, yet today, both eyes are able to thoroughly look at people with arrogance, what did he go through in between all this?
Ai~, this place that is the imperial palace, sure hides far too many matters.
During the time I had carried out a huge amount of thoughts, Xiao Shun Zi and I were already on our way back with the snacks, He Lian Chen sure is picky with food, a few days ago, one little dissatisfaction and several imperial cooks were dismissed, and now that there’s a new cook, he insists on having me to come over every day to pick new snacks, rewarded if he likes it, if he doesn’t like it, then the punishment is on the cook ––– say, what kind of a matter is this?
Putting aside his serious and arrogant look, the He Lian Chen that is like this, sure is the same as the unreasonable blind kid I ran into back then, interestingly reckless.
Right when Xiao Shun Zi and I were walking, a bearded elderly with white hair appears in front, seeing him carry a medicine box, I assume he’s the imperial physician. Xiao Shun Zi goes up and says with a smile: “This servant greets Imperial Physician Chen, is Imperial Physician heading to see his majesty right now?”
Imperial Physician Chen strokes his beard, “So it’s Eunuch Shun, Eunuch is correct, this old man is currently going to see his majesty.”
“Perfect, this servant is also heading there now.” Xiao Shun Zi grinningly says this, then points at me, saying: “This is the new eunuch, Xiao Lan Zi, has been serving by his majesty’s side as of recent.” He then says to me: “Xiao Lan Zi, this is Imperial Physician Chen of the Imperial Physician Court.”
I smile and say: “Xiao Lan Zi greets Imperial Physician Chen.”
Imperial Physician Chen says nothing, looking me up and down before meaningfully saying: “What a great delicately handsome Eunuch Lan.”
I hear something from within his words, this Imperial Physician Chen can presumably see that I’m a woman, but so what if he can see that, I only disguised as a man under imperial orders, who am I afraid of?”
Heng, I’m afraid of no one.
Then, we became a trio, Xiao Shun Zi occasionally finds a topic of conversation to speak to Imperial Physician Chen, whilst I silently listen to them talk. I assume Xiao Shun Zi is only trying to brighten up the atmosphere, none of his questions scratching the surface, not a sentence of what I want to hear. But it makes sense, can’t exactly have him ask, ‘what kind of health issue are you seeing his majesty for, Imperial Physician?’
This matter ah, I shall have to count on myself.
Arriving at the Imperial Study Room, the matter smoothly runs as a matter of course, He Lian Chen closes the doors to speak with Imperial Physician Chen, whilst Xiao Shun Zi and I stand outside the doors in waiting, and perhaps those exquisite snacks could only……
…..have a cold and neglected fate.
After keeping my ears on the alert for a long time whilst outside the doors, I come to a conclusion: en, the soundproof system of the Imperial Study Room is very effective.
And so I look at Xiao Shun Zi with hesitance, “Eunuch Shun, his majesty……Imperial Physician Chen……”
Xiao Shun Zi says with understanding: “Wanting to ask what health issue Imperial Physician is seeing his majesty for?”
I’m absolutely shocked, face showing a ‘how did you know’ look.
Xiao Shun Zi is instantly hyped up, speaking rather proudly: “I haven’t exactly been in the palace for a short time now, a young one like you is still wet behind the ears.”
I eagerly nod, “Eunuch Shun is correct, I am indeed very curious, from what I see, his majesty’s body is very strong ah, why would he still need to see the imperial physician? Seeing Eunuch be so familiar with Imperial Physician Chen, could it be that he comes frequently?”
Xiao Shun Zi covers his mouth and laughs, “Look at you saying so much in one breath without getting tired, alright, let me slowly tell you.” He sure does take his sweet time in neatening his sleeves before starting: “What Imperial Physician Chen comes to check up on for his majesty, isn’t issues concerning the body, but the eyes.”
I widen my eyes, eager to know more as I say: “Ah? Eyes? What’s wrong with his majesty’s eyes?”
Xiao Shun Zi looks at me rather strangely, “Were you not in Yun Zhan before?”
I awkwardly smile, “Eunuch is indeed intelligent, and all knowing, I come from the countryside.”
“No wonder why then, everyone who lives in the vicinity of the Capital knows his majesty’s eyes had gone bad at the age of five, only got better when he reached eleven.” Xiao Shun Zi says: “His majesty’s eyes were also cured by Imperial Physician back then, although they had gotten better, every few months, Imperial Physician Chen would come and check on them all over again, presumably due to the fear of anything happening to them again.”
I say with sudden realisation: “So it’s like that ah, all thanks to Eunuch Shun for telling me.” I scratch my head, “I really don’t know a thing here.”
Xiao Shun Zi laughs, “You’ve just come here, of course you wouldn’t know, all will go well as time goes on.” He suddenly bats his eyes at me, as though excited for more gossip, “But from what I see ah, amongst this, there’s definitely……hei-hei.”
I feel absolutely powerless against his wretched ‘hei-hei’, but my face remains unchanging as I ask: “Eunuch’s meaning is……?”
“His majesty has never called for anyone to serve him at night after appointing the consorts…..” He only says this one sentence, his face showing a ‘everything must remain unspoken as much as possible’ expression.
I feel aggrieved for He Lian Chen, Great Master He, your underling actually suspects your X ability……
Alright, in fact, I am also that tiny bit suspicious, a tiny bit, really just a tiny bit.
After Xiao Shun Zi and I were stood outside for approximately half an hour, Imperial Physician’s voice is heard, he calls out: “May Eunuch Lan come in.”
Xiao Shun Zi’s eyes shows slight dissatisfaction, and even pouted a little in secret, I smile at him before pushing the doors open and entering. Imperial Physician Chen leads me into the study room, inside, He Lian Chen is currently rubbing the between of his brows with his eyes closed, looking exhausted.
Imperial Physician Chen says to me: “Eunuch Lan, this old physician will be massaging his majesty’s eye area, hope you can carefully remember it, this task shall be left for you to do in future.” From his medicine box, he takes out a little tin box of ointment and applies it on the orbital area of He Lian Chen’s eyes, “This is an ointment this old physician has specially concocted for his majesty, massage it evenly inwards around the orbit, must be cautious to not let it get into his majesty’s eyes when applying.” After applying the ointment, he starts to massage it inwards from the outer area, then outwards from the inner area, whilst explaining: “Each direction is to be repeated ten times before changing, then massage for a minute and it should be enough.”
I carefully observe his technique, saying: “This servant remembers.”
Imperial Physician Chen stops the action and points to the medicine package on the table, saying: “Every day, Eunuch Lan is to tell people to slow boil those herbs for two hours, give it his majesty to take at noon, does Eunuch remember?”
I glance at He Lian Chen who says not a word as he keeps his eyes closed, nodding and saying: “Yes, understood.”
“After taking the medicine, further allow his majesty to close his eyes and rest for a quarter of an hour, must adhere to this every day.” Imperial Physician Chen strokes his beard as he says this.
Only then does He Lian Chen speak up in protest, “Zhen is busy with the state affairs every day, where to find the time to……”
“Your majesty.” Imperial Physician Chen’s face shows a slightly angered look, “The state affairs are naturally important, but to this subject, your majesty’s dragon body is what’s most important. This subject hopes your majesty is able to take good care of your dragon body.”
He Lian Chen’s voice sounds rather helpless, “Zhen’s body, zhen is naturally aware…….”
“If you’re aware then good, this subject hopes your majesty will not take the body as a joke, this subject may have cured your majesty’s eyes, but cannot guarantee they will continue to be fine, this subject……is incapable!” After Imperial Physician says this, he drops to his knees with a “dong” sound, the meaning of self-blame unknown but evident. Of course, the amount of self-infliction trick used, needs not be calculated.
He Lian Chen abruptly opens his eyes and walks up to Imperial Physician Chen, extending his arms, “Imperial Physician mustn’t self-blame, zhen’s eyes is all thanks to you, had it not been for you, zhen would still be a useless blind man. Zhen, zhen will just listen to you!”
Imperial Physician Chen finally raises his head, happily saying: “This subject shall withdraw first then.”
He Lian Chen nods, “Walk safely, Imperial Physician.”
At the side, I am sincerely impressed ah, ginger is definitely the older the spicier!
After Imperial Physician Chen leaves, He Lian Chen furrows his thick brows and sighs, “This old fox, always using such a tactic every time.”
I take the ointment box and walk up to him, “I say, not seen for so many years, yet your eyes seems to have not made that big of a progress?”
He Lian Chen turns to stare at me upon hearing this, a bright shine flashing past his star-like eyes, he slowly hooks up the corners of his lips, “What? Finally remembered?”
I slowly say: “En ah, remember now, turns out we met long before.”
He Lian Chen happily knocks my head, “Zhen had said your brain isn’t very good, zhen had already known a long time ago.”
“Long time ago?” I look at him doubtfully, “Did you not just know of this a few days ago?”
“Even so, zhen knew earlier than you.” He Lian Chen speaks in an ‘amazing to know earlier than you’ tone, “Zhen also remembers you lied to zhen, saying you are some thirteenth prince’s palace maid, called- what was it now, Ah-Dou, was it?” He glares at me: “Really a mouth full of nonsense!”
I look at him in amusement, “Your majesty, how could a girl’s maiden name be told to others so casually?”
“En-heng, causing zhen to look around everywhere for a long time, and still couldn’t find you, even thought zhen had run into a monster in the forest.” He provocatively says.
The corners of my lips twitch, based on what, am I considered a monster and not a fairy? Who says such things like you?
He once again looks proud, as he says: “Lucky zhen intelligently recognised you, if not, would have let you escaped right under my eyes again.”
With him mentioning this, I finally think of the previous topic, holding the ointment towards him as I say: “Your eyes……are they completely cured, gotten better now?”
Gloom sweeps past He Lian Chen’s eyes, his smile faltering, “Better, just can’t overwork them, if not, there’s the possibility of a relapse.”
Seeing his expression, I come to an understanding, looks like there’s some sort of cause behind the matter of his eyes. I suddenly smile wickedly, “Since it’s fine, then this servant shall help your majesty massage the eyes, then your majesty can rest for a quarter of an hour.”
He Lian Chen coughs a few times, looking very serious as he stands and says: “Zhen still have some matters to take care of, speak about it later, speak about it later.”
“Imperial Physician Chen shouldn’t have gone far yet, this servant still have some things to say to him……”
He Lian Chen sounds like he’s gritting his teeth, “Aren’t you going to hurry over?!”
“This servant, shall obey your majesty’s command.”
After that day, I started to make runs around the palace a lot more, speaking of which, it’s strange, the amount of time Consort Yi and I had run into each other, was no small number either, every time, she would pass by whilst arrogantly looking down at me with her nose up in the air. I don’t have much thoughts on this woman, is she just not the typical back palace woman, what’s there to be curious about?
Speaking of my fate with her, look at this, run into her again today. But this time, other than a palace maid at her side, there’s also an addition of a young woman in emerald green clothing. The young woman looks delicately pretty, evidently a lively lady at one glance. Right now, she is tugging at Consort Yi’s sleeve, swinging it about, “[Older] Sister, I really didn’t mean to, just let me off, Sister~ I know Sister is the best, Sister~”
Consort Yi’s originally rigid look exposes a helpless smile, pampering hidden within her reprimanding tone, “You damned lass, told you not to run around yet you insist on doing so, what to do if you wandered into somewhere that shouldn’t be entered? The palace is not like home, everything must be done with caution!”
The young woman grins, “I know, Sister is worried about me. I have but specially come to see you, having not seen for such a long time, could it be that you don’t miss me?”
Consort Yi swipes her nose, deliberately speaking with a cold voice: “Don’t miss, what’s there to miss about you?”
The young woman craftily smiles, reaching out to wrap her arms around Consort Yi’s waist, tickling the laughter out of her, “Sister’s words doesn’t match your heart, clearly misses me. Haha, Sister is but the one that dotes on Ah-Ruo the most.”
“Stop, stop now, you damned lass.” Consort Yi loses her breath from laughing, “Go back if you’re going to continue messing around!”
Only then does the young woman stops, pulling Consort Yi’s hand as she says: “Stopped messing now, stopped messing, Sister, I’m hungry.”
Consort Yi’s beautiful eyes glances at her and says: “Only know to eat.” Then says to the palace maid beside her: “Go to the Imperial Kitchen and ask for some things to be sent to the palace hall.”
The young woman joyfully hugs Consort Yi, “Just knew Sister dotes on me the most, love you to death!”
Consort Yi reaches out to poke at her forehead, “What kind of lady acts like this?!” But the doting love in her eyes is truly genuine.
I watch this pair of sisters in a daze, look, even the overbearing Consort Yi has such a tender and doting look in her eyes, just because of her lively younger sister. Such a harmonious sister pairing……
I coldly wait for them to leave before stepping out, such sisterly love runs deep, sure is a type of joke to me.
Three days later in the afternoon, He Lian Chen goes to admire flowers in the Imperial Garden’s pavilion, whilst carrying things from the Imperial Kitchen on my way there, I just happen to run into Consort Yi, who’s searching for someone, and the place Consort Yi is heading to, just so happens to be the Imperial Garden.
Consort Yi appears to still be so arrogant as usual, eyes flashing with disdain towards me. I naturally act like I don’t see any of this, what’s another person’s eyes got to do with me, as if I can go up and claw her eyes out?
Consort Yi’s prideful look instantly shatters when she sees two people kissing inside the pavilion. Turns out, that inside the pavilion, there’s currently an ambiguously romantic kiss scene playing, the main leads are precisely He Lian Chen and her younger sister. That innocent and adorable sister of hers is currently embracing He Lian Chen, absorbed in kissing him, not at all noticing Consort Yi and I, who are outside the pavilion. He Lian Chen on the other hand, has his eyes half opened as he looks at us with interest, appearing cold.
In the end, Consort Yi shakily calls out, “Ah-, Ah-Ruo, what are you doing?!”
Only then, does the young woman called Ah-Ruo open her eyes, looking at Consort Yi in shock, then frantically climbs down from He Lian Chen’s body as she says to Consort Yi: “Sister, I, Sister……”
Consort Yi deliberately acts calm as she walks into the pavilion, her steps slightly unstable, “Ah-Ruo, what, what are you doing right now, aren’t you going to hurriedly offer your apologies to his majesty……?”
“His majesty?” Ah-Ruo sheepishly glances at He Lian Chen, then appears to suddenly summon the courage to say as loudly as drums: “Sister, his majesty knows I’m your younger sister, his majesty doesn’t hate me, I, Sister, I already told his majesty that I like him, I also wish to become his consort like Sister. Sister, I like his majesty, liked him since a very long time ago!”
Within Consort Yi’s eyes, there’s something that bit by bit breaks down, the smile at her lips looking worse than crying, she shakily says: “How could that be? Ah-Ruo, that is his majesty ah, he’s your brother-in-law……”
“Sister, I like his majesty, liked him way before you married him.” Ah-Ruo’s brightly shining eyes releases a roll of tear, like a broken pearl necklace, each and every drop real, “Sister, I really like his majesty, perhaps I mean, I really love his majesty, I wish to be with his majesty, Sister wouldn’t object this right? I’m sorry Sister, I really do love his majesty very much, Sister, I’m sorry, I’m sorry, please forgive Ah-Ruo, will you? Ah-Ruo wishes to be with his majesty……”
Consort Yi’s lips trembles, unable to say anything, the tears in her eyes slowly falls.
Yet the culprit that was the cause of this entire situation, is comfortably sat at the side, enjoying the show, cold as though it has nothing to do with him.
I mockingly laugh, sisterly love runs deep? En? Is this how it’s repaid?
I slightly loosen my hands, leaving the tray in hand to slowly fall straight to the ground, sounding an ear-piercing sound that cannot be ignored, then coldly say to the two of them: “Are you two, done speaking?”
I’m noticing many people starting to jump onto the HLC ship hehe, fair warning though, the author does have a tendency to add a bad side to these male characters we initially view favourably. Regardless, I do enjoy the lightheartedness that this arc brings back into the story, almost like the Meng Estate arc in the beginning, only that the dark undertones are much more evident here, and will continue to show itself more from hereon.
Coming up next will be a side chapter, it’s finally time to take a look into the past life……